MASSIVE 110 CAR FIELD FOR SAES: NINE-HOURS OF KYALAMI SUPPORT RACES
Preview: SAES: Nine-Hours of Kyalami Support Races
15 – 16 December, Kyalami Grand Prix Circuit
The Kyalami Grand Prix Circuit is going to be packed to the rafters with racing cars over the weekend of 15 and 16 December as the support races for the SAES: Nine Hours of Kyalami are set to keep spectators on the edge of their seats across three categories over the two days.
With Friday, 15th December a public holiday, and fans allowed to park next to the circuit and bring their own braais and refreshments as it used to be in the old Nine-Hour days, motorsport fans are in for a treat with two-full days of racing action.
The growth of the support race classes is testament to the ever-growing popularity of the SAES’ SA Endurance and SA GT National Championships and the prestige that racing with the two championships affords competitors in other series.
SAES co-founders Xolile Letlaka, Izak Spies and CEO Wayne Riddell are the driving force behind bringing the Nine-Hours of Kyalami to Gauteng, with the aim of growing the motorsport audience for the benefit of the sport as a whole. Affordability is key to this objective and ticket prices start at R50 for general access on Friday and R100 for Saturday.
A major coup for the Southern African Endurance Series is securing live SuperSport coverage of all the races from 14h30 on Friday until the chequered flag falls at 21h00 in Saturday. The SAES YouTube channel will also livestream the entire event, sharing the action with motorsport fans across the world.
Heading the entry list is a full grid of fifty Silvercup 2.0 machinery headed by the five Class A+ entries of Marius Jacobs and his wild AAA Recovery Centre Opel Tigra-Nissan, who will be chased hard by Riaan Draper’s Toyota and Giulio Airaga’s Desco Electronic Recyclers Opel Tigra-Mazda.
Bring your earplugs for the pair of raucous Mazda rotaries driven by Quinton Ferreira (Vincent Ferreira Racing Capella) and SPS Racing’s Dewald Pretorius in an indecently rapid RX7.
Class B has 22 entries including seven guests from the BMW M///Performance Parts Championship and a host of competitors from the Car Care Clinic series.
Leading the class fight should be Reinhardt Miller who ended second overall in the BMW Championship while Dirk Lawrence will have his rapid Coastal Hire Honda Ballade in contention. Other BMW M///Performance Parts guests include Nek Makris, Bennie Luyt, Renier Smith, teen hotshot Jagger Robertson, Dewald Smith and Free Sate racer Leonard Archer who will be taking the opportunity of racing at the Kyalami track and will be vying for one last trophy for the year.
Harking back to the glory days of Group 1 racing, Gary Stacey will field his Ford Sierra XR8 while a quartet of Subaru Impreza STis will do battle, headed by the Devlaw version of Johan van der Vyver with Braam Muller, Johan Labuschagne and Juan de Wet all in the mix.
Lady karting champion Fabienne Lanz will be out to show the boys around the track in her Target Corporate Karting VW Golf and will have her hands full with fellow VW racers Kobus Brits, Car Care Clinic Champion Louis Scholtz, Jonathan Visser and Andre de Lange’s Creative Ink Golf.
Class B features six different manufacturers including Gerrit Murray’s Alfa Romeo GTV 2.0, Tihan van Rooyen’s Porsche 924, the Nissan Sentra of Ryno van Zyl, two BMWs of Oz Biagioni and Michael Grobler and two ubiquitous VW Polos driven by Chantelle Viljoen and Roland Hopkins while Nic Martin will be upholding French honour with his Peugeot 206.
The open top Nash-VW of Michael Kernick should be a contender for Class C honours, but will face off against the extremely rapid Shield VW Golf driven by Wayne Lebotschy, while GRD Motorsport’s Giles and Kenny Darroch and Jason Marques have a trio of VW Golfs to upset the applecart. Andre Needham has a Polo at his disposal, while Deon Schwabsky (Ford Escort), John Simpson (Alfa Romeo GT Junior) and Sean Fandam’s rare Fiat 124 Sport Coupe add an exotic element to the class.
Calling back the Kyalami 9-Hour of yore, a Datsun 1200GX and 1200GX Coupe driven by Johan Coetzer Jr and Ian Kilburn respectively will hark back to the giant-killing days of the Kyalami 9-Hours Index of Performance in the mid-1970s. Jayden Goosen will be behind the wheel of a Renault Sandero in Class D with Johan Coetzer in another Class E entered Datsun 1200GX.
PABAR VW Challenge
33 cars from the exciting and intensely close PABAR VW Challenge will thrill spectators as the big guns in Class A vie for victory with class battles raging throughout the field.
Heading the top class is Wayne Masters, a multiple race winner this season in his Performance Masters Polo, with Mydi Mfana (MDS Consulting), Luigi Ferro (Eco Simply Solar), Mike Barbaglia (PABAR), Chris Dale (PoziDrive) and Dean Ross (Norbrake) giving everything to secure a win as they have done all season long.
Ready to put a spoke in the proverbial wheels of the regular Challenge competitors is Dawie van der Merwe, coming off a successful season of Polo Cup racing where he finished second in the title race.
Class B is headed by the provisional champion Hannes Scheepers in his Dainfern Dental Polo. KZN visitor Shiren Rajpaul (Dubcorp), Elna Croeser (Ate Brakes), Lee Thompson, Stelio Nousias (We Fix Cars), Tinahe Ncube (Eco Simply Solar) and teenager Josh Wilford (Coating Techniques) are likely to trade paint and positions as the race unfolds.
Not to be outdone, Mo Karodia found a turn of speed as the season progressed in his Fast 5 Polo, and will be aiming for the podium, while Stuart Mack, in the Class X experimental 3 cylinder, one-litre Polo won the last four races of the season and will be out for more of the same.
Jacques Hayes (Platinum Wheels), Martin de Beer (MLP), Daniel Gammie (GTR Performance), Chris Davison (Himoinsa), Adriaan de Beer (Ukwazi Engineering) and Tyler Robinson (AF Fans) will look to end their season on a high note.
Philip Croeser (ATE Brakes) and Andy Gossman (Goose Motorsport) will resume their battle of wits in Class C while Charl Anderson (PABAR) returns to the track for the first time since mid-season. Dimitri and Michael Zapheriou don’t allow family to affect their racing and a tough outing can be expected from the brothers while Allan Pereira (Daisy Business Solutions) will be waiting in the wings to pick up any pieces.
Charl and Derick Smalberger have entered current Polo Cup specification machinery with Sabertek support, while the 2023 Polo Cup Champion Charl Visser will be on the grid in his Polo Cup car entered by Volkswagen Motorsport.
If you want to see cars racing three abreast, look no further than the Lotus Challenge. Based on the Lotus 7 designed by Colin Chapman in 1957, the challenge is divided into two main classes, B and L. Class B must use a Toyota motor and runs on control Dunlop tyres, while Class L is for South African-built replicas and based on the Locost principles of the book “Build your own sports car for as little as ₤250”. They run South African-built Ford Rocam motors and control Dunlop rubber.
Heading the charge is motoring journalist Thomas Falkiner in his Taylon-Toyota, a season-long stalwart and just missing out on the Class B championship by three points. He will be chased by fellow Taylon driver David Jermy while a host of Birkin-mounted teams will be in the thick of the action, led by Jeff Gable who ended fourth in the title race this season, and Andrew Kynaston. David Jermy, Tinus Botes, Carel Schaap, Clive Wilmot and Brett van Rensburg will all be out to catch the flying Falkiner.
The overall Lotus Challenge and Class L Champion Nick Hodgson will head the pack of Locost class L entries in his Singular Systems Locost-Ford. Teammate Miles Downard will take on Lotus Index of Performance and Masters Champion Andrew Fulton (Leet Racing), who beat Barry Dunford by a single point in the Index title chase.
Other top racers should include Sean Hepburn in his APWS Locost and Sean Hewitt’s Caterham. Fourth and fifth in the championship respectively, Davide Favo and Andre du Plessis will resume their personal battle, but will have Phil Clarke, Clive Wilmot, Thys de Kock, Wesley Maxwell, TingWin Wen, Charl Marais, Ben Knights and Juan du Toit for company.
Kyalami VIP and VVIP Experience:
SAES has crafted a VIP package for discerning guests costing R1000 per person. The package includes all meals, a cash bar, a private viewing area at the Legends Boma as well as access to the Paddock Lounge above the pits and the stellar line-up of musicians that includes Cassper Nyovest, DJ Zinhle, Mörda and the Kings of The Weekend.
Tickets can be further upgraded to a VVIP package which includes a hot lap in a racing car around the world-famous 4.5km track.
General Admission Tickets:
Tickets cost R50 per person for Friday entry and R100 per person on Saturday for general access. Spectators are welcome to bring their gazebos, braais and refreshments and park against the fence to watch the action.