09 Dec RACE PREVIEW – STAR-STUDDED FIELD FOR 9 HOUR AT CAPE MOTORSPORT FESTIVAL
STAR-STUDDED FIELD FOR 9 HOUR AT CAPE MOTORSPORT FESTIVAL
With no less than 35 entries, plus another 11 who will be racing for the first hour only, the grid at the start of the Cape 9 Hour, the climax of the 2021 SA Endurance Series, just after noon on Saturday 11 December at the Cape Motorsport Festival presented by the City of Cape Town and G+A Motorsport, will be a magnificent sight.
The entry list includes some of the fastest cars in the country, bearing names such as Lamborghini, Ferrari, Porsche and Lola – but there are more names to conjure with under the drivers’ helmets, starting with South African racing legends Sarel van der Merwe and Geoff Mortimer, sharing one of the Team Africa Le Mans Ginettas.
The two bring a wealth of endurance racing talent and experience to the table (Mortimer won the GT4 Class in a TALM Ginetta last year) and will be a force to be reckoned with in the GT3 Class this year. Team Africa Le Mans has also entered a Pilbeam MP98 for Jaki Scheckter, son of former SA champion Ian and nephew of 1979 Formula 1 world Champion Jody Scheckter, and four times WesBank V8 champion Hennie Groenewald.
And then there’s the ‘home’ team: The third TALM entry is a Ginetta G54, competing in the GT4 Class and crewed by Dr Greg Mills, Tim Reddell and Mark Ridgway, the WPMC President, Chairman and Vice-Chairman respectively!
Perhaps the most illustrious of the international entries is that of Gregory, Lord Thornton, multiple former Historic Formula 1 champion and team principal of Titan Historic Racing. He’s down to race the one-hour ‘race within a race’ in a classic Chevron sports-car, and will then join Colin Ellison and Bryan Morgan for the next eight hours in the Titan Backdraft Roadster.
It’s one of no less than 15 of these thundering V8 Lexus-powered Cobra replicas entered for the 9 Hour, making Class E not only the biggest class in the race but also the noisiest!
Last year’s outright winner, Franco Scribante, has made an unexpected sideways move into a Volkswagen Polo SupaCup with up-and-coming hotshot Jason Campos; they’re not likely to feature at the sharp end but must start as favourites in Class B.
The overall leaders, however, are likely to be the Stradale Lamborghini Huracans of Charl Arangies/Arnold Neveling and Tschops Sipuka/Xollile Letlaka, with the AidCall247 Ligier JS53 of Nick Adcock, Michael Jensen, Dean Venter and 2021 National Investchem Formula 1600 champion Andrew Rackstraw to keep them honest, along with the Hammond Motorsport Lamborghini Super Trofeo (Sam Hammond/Nathan Hammond/Damian Hammond/Trevor Bland), the Bigfoot Express Ferrari 458 (Michael Pitamber/Bradley Scorer/Gavin Cronje) and the WCT Porsche 991 GT3 Cup of Hein and Henk Lategan, ably assisted by third driver Verissimo Tavares.