04 Apr Extreme Festival – Crash, bash — bangers ‘n smash!!!
Crash, bash — bangers ‘n smash!!!
Caption: This V12 Aston Martin Vantage really hit the high notes during the first Extreme Supercar round at Kyalami last month.
With the second round of South Africa’s leading motorsport series — the 2018 Extreme Festival – due to take place at Killarney on April 21, the havoc that occurred during the opening meeting at Kyalami last month, takes on particular significance.
Because while a day of hard driving on the high-veld produced a selection of smashes that Evel Knievel would have been proud of, there were also a number of magnificent performances from those who were not involved in the day’s demolition.
In the opening event for the premier Sasol Global Touring Cars (GTC), the BMW’s seemed to have found a margin above the rest, as Gennaro Bonafede, Robert Wolk, the Cape’s Johan Fourie and Michael van Rooyen qualified on the two front rows of the grid.
However once the lights changed, the mayhem began. Daniel Rowe spun his Volkswagen in the first corner. Michael Stephen (Petronas Audi) and Matthew Hodges (VW Jetta), then chased Wolk until the BeeEm’s front suspension collapsed and it was badly damaged after ploughing into the Mineshaft barriers at high speed. While Wolk was fortunate to escape serious injury, his car appeared to be in need of major orthopaedic surgery.
Stephen, Fourie and Simon Moss (Petronas Audi), then followed Bonafede to the finish.
The second GTC race was even more spectacular and was red flagged after just two laps when Adrian Woods hit the Mineshaft tyre wall at high speed in his VW Golf GTi. Meanwhile Rowe got out of shape and was forced to retire after crashing into Fourie’s Beemer. Fortunately the Kaapenaar was able to continue.
Moss led the restart until a spin cost him several places. He was followed by Hodges, who pulled off after diagnosing a problem that was affecting his Jetta’s motivation. Fourie then retired in a far more spectacular fashion when brake problems at the end of the pit straight resulted in his Beemer being mangled big time, after colliding with Stephen’s Audi.
Of course, the red flag came out again.
After the restart, the Beemers of race one winner Bonafede and Van Rooyen were soon back in the pits. And as he was then the last senior GTC car moving, victory was claimed by a jubilant Audi propelled Simon Moss.
He was followed by an equally elated Bradley Liebenberg, whose Ferodo Mini JCW managed to eventually see off all the GTC2 Golfers, during a thrilling second event.
By contrast, the G&H Extreme Supercar category that included examples of Ferrari and Lamborghini, was headed by Charl Arangies in his new Aston Martin Vantage. And with a magnificent V12 exhaust note that would have been accepted in Milan’s La Scala Opera House, it provided an irresistible banquet of sight and sound.
Competitors in the exciting all-new one make, six speed, turbocharged, 2-litre, Engen VW Polo Cup events also have the advantage of a push-to-pass booster that gives them an extra 20 kw for ten seconds, when needed.
Although they gave nothing away, they were less crash conscious than the GTC guys and the safety car only had to be called out once, when Simon Need became hooked in the tyre wall after a collision.
With reigning F1600 champion Julian van der Watt competing in the USA, Stuart White was able to win both Kyalami single seater events – although not without a struggle.
Switching to two wheels, the Cape’s Lance Isaacs dominated the Thunderbike events and can be expected to do the same at sea level. However, although Graeme van Breda won both Red Square ZX 10 Masters races, if local super-hero Danie Maritz submits an entry, the Killarney result could be different.
At this stage the organisers are not yet aware of how many of those mentioned here are going to be ready in time for the Cape round, but even if a few miss out, it promises to be a day of thrilling, all-or-nothing motor racing.
So if you want action that will make the coming WWW rough-and-tumble wrestling tour look like an electric car with a flat battery – be at Killarney on April 21.