Words: Deon VDL                                                                                                          Pics: Deon VDL & Jen Venter

As I got to the track on the morning of race day, there was already excitement in the air, and the pits were buzzing all over. The kids were running around playing, friends and family all amped up for the action to come.  SASCS with all the bells and whistles made sure that this will be another race day to be remembered. As soon as everything and everyone was in place, the action packed day was ready to kick off.

Getting the day started as always, were the Clubmans. Out of their qualifying round, No 21 Arno Erasmus put on a time that could not be beat – 1:21.721 seconds saw him in pole position. The front row followed with No 96 Sabastiano D’Arrigo in second, 1:26.294 and No 23 Terrence Chowles in third 1:29.842. No 21 Erasmus from pole and throughout the day was not to be touched, powering his way to a comfortable first overall. No 96 DÁrrigo cruised his way to an easy second place for the day. No 23 Chowles ended in third place followed by No 258 Vaugn Bronkhoorst in fourth and No 13 Jacques Swanepoel in fifth place.

Fans gathered next to the track as the kids came out to entertain. No 550 Marnitz Otten took pole in the PW50 class with a time of 1:08.837 and Declan Schoeman in second at 1:18.811. In the Novice class. No 100 Tanner Oosthuizen rode well to qualify first in his class with a time of 1:12.975. Second was No 11 Zander du Toit 1:16.776, third was number 27 Kiros Taliotes 1:19.505 and fourth No 143 Tsebo Mofokabe 1:25.557. The rain started and No 550 Otten did what he always does and took the lead and stayed out front to the end taking first place, and No 52 Shoeman at second in their class. The Novice Class brought some good racing battles. In the end we saw No 11 du Toit take the top spot, No 100 Oosthuizen in second and No 21 Taliotes taking third. No 142 Mafokate in fourth place.

SM2 got to entertain the fans next, and entertaining was the word of the day. Qualifying saw No 30 Ruben Weterman on pole with a time of 1:14.707 and close behind in second spot was No. 57 Diego de Ponte with 1:15.121 and No 187 Matthew Scholtz in third with a time of 1:16.880. The Weterman twins were yet again on form making it rather difficult for the riders, except one, No 57 de Ponte brought his A game as he challenged the twins.  No 30 Ruben Weterman and de Ponte had an all day battle which saw de Ponte to be victorious as he took first place overall with Ruben very close behind. No 31 Luan Weterman made his way to claim the third place, No 187 Matthew Schultz came fourth with No 707 Treavin claiming fifth spot.

SM Junior 85cc and 65cc wowed the crowd with their speed and agility. In the 85cc class it was No 99 Adam Naidoo who flew to pole position with an amazing time of 1:19.981. No 77 Mueez Jassat next to him in second, less than a second slower. No 69 Tyler Morgan qualified third in his class. When the racing started, No 00 Naidoo was not to be stopped as he made sure that his racing day was perfect taking the top step on the podium. No 77 Jassat once again stood next to him on the second step. No 69 Morgan took third and No 70 Juliano Caeiro took fourth.

The 65cc class was also action packed seeing No 110 Bohlale Mafokate qualify first with a time of 1:24.250 and No 40 Lorenzo de Ponte very close with a time of 1:24.578. No 101 Keaton de Jager came in third with a time of 1:25.844. These youngsters gave us quite a show as they attacked each other until the end. Once the dust settled, it was No 101 de Jager who claimed top spot while No 110 Mafokte came second AND No 40 de Ponte filled the podium at third. No 134 Joe Louw who won ride of the day was in fourth and No 711 Tristan Swart proudly took fifth spot.

As our youngsters moved to the side, they gave way to the more experienced riders. SM Masters had the top three qualifiers as follows – No 183 Werner Linder took pole position with 1:14.913, No 84 Cristian Caravelle 1:15.435 and No 22 Mark Newland with 1:15.570 making top 3’s time difference only 0.657 seconds. Their racing was just as close during the day. It was No 84 Caravello who won the battle for first place. No 183 Linder in second with an amazing display, and No 22 Newland in a well deserved third place. No 258 Vaughn Bronkhorst made his way to fourth and No 23 Terrence Chowles in fifth.

The Grand Masters had No 17 Tom Maritz qualify in first with a time of 1:17.458 and right behind him No 121 Shaun Pietersen 0.415 seconds slower. No 17 Maritz was just too much for Pietersen as the No 17 bike crossed the finish line first and No 121 Pietersen just behind in second.

150 Cup Juniors and Seniors came out to entertain next, and what a great show for all to enjoy. The Juniors kept things very close in qualifying with No 22 Cayden Robert first on the grid with 1:21.313, No 57 Diego de Pnte in second with a time of 1:21.875 and No 52 Troy Tonking with 1:22.565. They kept the show going with brilliant racing only for No 22 Robert to steal the show and take first place as well as the R5 000.00 prize money. No 57 de Ponte took second, and took the third step on the podium, No 21 Arno Erasmus, and finishing at fourth No 52 Troy Tonking and No 17 Jarrod Geypen at fifth.

With R10 000.00 in prize money, the Seniors gave their all from start to finish. No 6 Clinton Seller put up a time of 1:18.370 to take pole position and to make things clear, he will not be stopped. No 13 Thabang Keswa stood second with 1:21.210, and on his heels, No 171 Taigh Janse van Rensburg with 1:21.455.  Regretfully Janse van Rensburg had to withdraw due to illness, moving No 33 Aston Nesbitt with his time of 1:22.541 to third on the grid. No 6 Seller proved his worth as he raced his way to first place and claimed the R10 000.00. No 13 Keswa managed to rake in second place with No 33 Nesbitt breathing down his neck in third.  No 55 Duane Tengstrom in fourth holding off No 72 Guy Wilson who ended at fifth spot.

SM Junior had a three way battle that had the fans on the edge of their seats. Starting with qualifying with a time difference of only a mere 0.354 seconds between the top three riders. No 26 Ethan de Freitas took pole with 51.518 seconds, No 22 Blake Robert 51.638 seconds and no 1 Keaton de Jager with 51.872 seconds. From the start to the last checkered flag these three boys fought each other tooth and nail. In the end it was No 26 de Freitas who reigned supreme. No 22 Robert fought hard to walk away with second and No 1 de Jager taking third. The rider of the day No 34 Joe Louw came fourth, No 14 Quandre Potgieter fifth and No 550 Marnitz Otten in sixth place.

The finale as always was the SM1 and SM15 class which is always a nail biting cracker of a show. SM1 saw No 33 Aston Nesbitt taking pole with 1:10.008, No 13 Ryan van Mieukerk seconds with 1:10.424 and third on the grid went to No 183 Werner Linder with 1:13.957. No 33 Nesbitt and No 13 van Nieuwkerk were trading blows the entire day and presented a rather good show. It was No 33 Nesbit who came out victorious as he took first overall with a perfect day, No 13 van Nieuwkerk with a well deserved second overall, and awesome riding saw No183 Werner Linder take third. No 84 Christian Caravello was in fourth and No 923 Brandon Heukelman came in at fifth and No 34 Louis de Ponte took sixth.

SM15 gave us No 171 Taigh Janse van Rensburg on pole only to see him withdraw from race day. We then had No18 Hunter Dreyer take pole with 1:12.472 and Michael Louw in second with 1:17.565. No 18 Dreyer held his pace to take first place with No 134 Louw in second.

With such an amazing race day it always makes us wonder what the next round holds.  As our excitement builds and our hunger for the next race day increases, let us salute all our riders, take it easy and stay safe.

See you all at the SASCS Round 4 Polokwane on the 24 June 2023.

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