The 2016 Investchem Formula Ford Kent championship gets underway on Saturday, 12 March at Red Star Raceway near Delmas. While most of the competitors drove the circuit at the final round of the 2015 championship last November it will be like driving a new circuit this visit.
Red Star is unique among South African circuits in that for 6 months of the year events run in an anti-clockwise direction and for the second half of the year they run in a clockwise direction. On this visit the drivers will have to learn the anti-clockwise route through the track’s 13 corners.
Reigning champion Andrew Horne (Xena Chemicals / Budd Power Royale RP31) will be looking to get the defence of his title off to a flying start but chief among those looking to spoil his plans will be Ian Schofield in his Investchem Mygale.
Schofield has finished in the runners-up spot on the championship log for the past two seasons and will be looking to go one better and claim another title in 2016.
Regular front runner Matthys Strydom hung up his helmet at the end of 2015 and work commitments have prevented 2014 champion Graham Hepburn from getting his car ready in time for the opening event of the season so the challenge to Horne and Schofield will have to come from other quarters.
Dean Venter (Turnfab Engineering / Manitou Group Swift) ran with the leaders on a number of occasions last year and he should be up there again this year. Jeff Gable (Taylon Motorsport Van Diemen) is another who can mount a serious challenge as can Allen Meyer (Van Diemen) and Joe Nash (Swift).
With upwards of a dozen cars likely to line up on the grid, the only certainty is that there will be some very close single seater action at Red Star Raceway.
As usual Friday will be a practice day with qualifying getting underway at 09h10 on Saturday morning. The first of the two 8-lap races is scheduled to begin at 12h05 while the lights should go out to signal the start of race two 15h45.