The fifth round of the 2012 Pro Tour Motor Racing Roadshow will take place at Zwartkops Raceway west of Pretoria on Saturday (30 June). With over 110 entries in six categories, close racing should be the order of the day.
The GT Challenge field will feature three classes. At the head of the filed in the GT1 class Charl Arangies (Noble Ford) and Rod Cole-Edwards (Porsche 993) share the championship lead. Their battle for supremacy could be interrupted by Toby Venter who is scheduled to make one of his infrequent appearances in his Porsche GT3 Cup car.
The Bigfoot Express Porsches of Sun Moodley and Andrew Culbert are currently battling it out at the top of the GT2 championship log with Moodley just two points ahead of his team mate. Nicky Dicks is third in the championship log and will be looking to make up ground on the leaders after not scoring any points at the last round in Cape Town. Johan Engelbrecht, who delivered a great performance on his home track in Cape Town, has indicated he will be making the trip up north and could challenge the established order in his Porsche 996. A pair of KTM X-Bows, driven by Greg Parton and Deon du Plessis, will add variety to the field as will Jonathan Shenkman’s Ferrari 430.
In the GT3 class Kris Budnik (BMW M3) will be looking to extend his championship lead but Christo Lotter, Gary Kieswetter and Preyen Moodley will be doing their best to limit the damage.
Current GT Classic championship leader George Avvakoumides only has an eight point lead over Andrie Betser with Andreas Letlink just one point further back in third. The three of them, together with Willem van der Westhuizen, Stefan Puschavez and Harry Arangies, will all be looking for a good points haul on the day. Donovan Symes, who only joined the series two round ago, could also feature prominently.
The Shelby CanAm series will certainly provide some great action around the 2.4 km long Zwartkops series. In the first race last time out in Cape Town Ferdi van Niekerk showed that he has the pace to run with the leaders when he pushed defending champion Rui Campos all the way to the chequered flag. They will be looking for more of the same as they attempt to bridge the gap to championship leader Brian Algar. Between Campos, in fifth place on the championship log, and Algar at the head of the table are Andrew Strike, Thomas Rieb and Alan Eve. Just two points separate this trio.
Kawasaki ZX-10 Masters Cup
Stewart MacLeod has opened up a substantial lead in the Kawasaki ZX-10 Masters Cup championship. The former SA Superbike champion has a handy 56 point lead over Brian Bontekoning with Pieter de Vos just eight points further back. This is certain to change as MacLeod will not be at Zwartkops this weekend; he is away on an overseas trip.
Bontekoning and de Vos are likely to be at the head of the field although MacLeod’s team mate, Paul Jacobs, is likely to make his presence felt at the sharp end of the pack. Joe Shearer and Johan le Roux have also been putting in some impressive performances of late.
The four classes that make up the Goldwagen Challenge will boast a combined field of more than 35 cars. Waldie Meintjies had a disappointing trip to Cape Town and will be looking for a much improved performance at Zwartkops to extend his lead at the top of the Class A log. He has a 16 point cushion over Gerhard Henning and Derick Smalberger with Keagean Blanckensee just three points further back.
Darren Nathan and Rory Atkinson are likely to be the front runners in Class B and will be hoping to avoid a repeat of their coming together on the start line in Cape Town. Nathan holds a 10-point advantage going into the weekend but that could change by Saturday afternoon.
Overall and Class C championship leader Jannie van Rooyen has been putting his years of experience to good use and has built up a 22 point advantage over Henry van Vledder. Gina Munro leads the third place battle by just three points from Wouter Roos with Andre Needham a further point back.
In Class D James Hurley has almost double the points of closest challenger Devon Piazza-Musso who has Lyle Ramsay in close attendance.
Some of the closest racing of the year on the Pro Tour has come from the Formula Vee brigade. With six or seven drivers fighting it out at the head of the field in each race the championship is likely to go down to the wire.
Jaco Schriks heads the title chase going into the weekend with Greg Wilson leading the challenging pack. Peter Hills is next up ahead of Alan Holm, Johan Gouws, Scott Temple and Nicholas Tennant (Tennant Life Rhema 2) in close attendance.
The gates at Zwartkops will open at 8am, with racing getting underway at 10am. Admission will cost R70 per adult and R50 per student, with kids under the age of 12 going in for free.