The Extreme Festival makes its way down to East London on Saturday, 9 July 2016 when the drivers and riders will tackle South Africa’s fastest racing circuit. Five categories, three four-wheeled and two two-wheeled, will be on the bill at the East London Grand Prix Circuit.
Keagan Masters leads the Engen Volkswagen Cup championship

Image by Paul Bedford – Action Images

The Engen Volkswagen Cup is one of two national championship categories on the program in East London. Two Signature Motorsport drivers are at the head of the championship log after the first three rounds of the 2016 season – Keagan Masters (Champion) has a 10-point advantage over Chris Shorter (Payen).

While Masters has competed at the East London Grand Prix Circuit before, it was in a single seater. The 16-year old said:

“It’s not my best track in terms of results in my Formula Ford season.  I will have to re-learn it to an extent.  It takes nerves of steel to go through Potter’s and Rifle Range flat out.  Wind can also be a factor – if you pick up a tailwind, you can arrive a bit too fast and then it will get very busy in the car.  A quadruple pole position will be a nice achievement, and if I can maintain my lead in the championship after the two heats, I will be very happy.”

The Engen Volkswagen Cup is not all about the young drivers. Behind the leading duo the fight for third place on the championship log is between three drivers who are also competing in the Masters category (for competitors older than 27). Trevor Bland (Universal Health Care/Phoenix) is leading the charge from Shaun La Reserveé Alpine Motors / Compendium Insurance) and Juan Gerber (Glassfit / Ctrack / XCT), but with only seven points between them things could look completely different by the time they leave East London.

The other three Signature Motorsport drivers occupy the next three positions one the log. Bradley Liebenberg (Ferodo) had a win and a second place last time out on Port Elizabeth and leads Jurie Swart in a similarly liveried car by four points whit Matt Shorter (Champion) not far behind.

An interesting addition to the field is former Engen Volkswagen Cup and current Comsol VW Challenge driver Tasmin Pepper. She will be out in the SMD Racing Polo normally piloted by rookie Daniel Duminy who has decided to skip the event to concentrate on his challenge for the SA Junior Max karting championship.

The top three. Dewald Brummer leads Julian van der Watt and Dean Venter

Image by Paul Bedford – Action Images

The Investchem Formula Ford championship is the second national category on the bill. Last time out, at Zwartkops, veteran Rick Morris (Investchem Mygale) nearly spoiled the young drivers’ Youth Day celebrations when he pushed Dewald Brummer (MAD Racing / Anglo Trucks / Fuchs Oils Mygale) all the way to the chequered flag. Unfortunately UK based Morris will not be at East London so the youngsters will have to fight among themselves.

After two race wins last time out Brummer has a slender two-point lead over Julian van der Watt (Investchem Mygale) with Dean Venter (MAD Racing / Anglo Trucks / Fuchs Oils Mygale) just six points further back in third. Venter will be looking to build on his success last weekend where he won both heats in the Investchem Formula Ford Kent regional championship event at Phakisa.

In the absence of Morris, Alex Gillespie (Mbotyi River Lodge Mygale) will be looking to score minimum of five points which will allow him to move into fourth place on the log.

Former champion Jason Campos (MAD Racing / Fuchs Oils Mygale) and current Formula Ford Kent regional champion Andrew Horne (Investchem Mygale) are others on the entry list who could make things interesting for the championship front runners.

Gianni Giannoccaro in action at Zwartkops

Image by Paul Bedford – Action Images

The third four-wheeled category that will be in action is the G&H Extreme Supercars. Based on his performances so far this season Jonathan du Toit (TAR Ferrari 430) is likely to be the man to beat but there are a host of drivers looking to stop him driving away with the victor’s spoils.

The Big Foot Express Freight Racing Porsches of Sun Moodley and Andrew Culbert ahould be up near the front as should the G&H Transport BMWs of Gianni Giannoccaro and Dawie Olivier. Others who could be in the mix include Darren Winterboer (Barons BMW) and Olivier Dalais (Porsche).

Sven Grune leads Pierre de Vos

Image by Paul Bedford – Action Images

Turning to the two-wheeled brigade the Red Square Kawasaki ZX10 Masters Cup should provide some spectacular action. Sven Grune leads the overall championship from Kyle Robinson and Pieter de Vos but, with a maximum of 50 points on offer, the margins are too close for any of them to feel comfortable.

Behind the leading trio things are just as close. Johan le Roux is in fourth place ahead of Teddy Brooke with Graeme van Breda, who missed the last couple of round due to injury, in sixth place.

In the Dunlop Thunderbikes it will be a fight between Yamaha and Kawasaki with Gareth Davison (Yamaha) and Dean Vos (Kawasaki) likely to be fighting it out at the front.

Qualifying sessions start at 08h00 with racing proper scheduled to begin at 10h15.