A chilly Red Star Raceway hosted the fourth round of the 2019 Car Care Clinic SuperHatch Championship on Saturday, 20 July. While the weather may have been cold, the racing was anything but. Andre de Lange (Roofsure Audi A3) took the first heat win from Jonathan du Toit (Trans Africa Racing Honda Civic) before du Toit romped away at the front of the second heat to take a decisive victory. Championship leader Nic Martin (Rex Diff & Gearbox Peugeot 207) won Class B in the opening heat but couldn’t complete the second after being hit from behind by another competitor allowing Shane Forget (4J’s Auto Opel Cub) to take a hard-fought win. Andre Dannahuser piloted his Pro Auto Rubber/Jestik Opel Corsa to both Class C wins.
Although the front of the grid in each of the SuprHatch classes is determined by the reverse finishing order of the previous race, qualifying does give some idea of who is quick on the day. Du Toit was the only one of the Class A brigade who could get close to de Lange’s time in the morning qualifying session, but even so, the Audi man was 0.375” quicker than anyone else. Brett Garland (autObarn/Incco/Sabat Honda Civic) was next up with Louis Scholtz (Car Care Clinic Honda Civic) not far behind him. Wouter Roos (Nathan’s Motorsport VW Polo) led the way in Class B with Bryce Pillay (VW Motorsport Polo) and Martin not much slower while Dannhauser was comfortably quickest in Class C.
There was early drama in the opening race when Hennie Swanepoel (VW Golf) lost control of his car on the cold track. The subsequent collision left Swanepoel, together with Freddy Watkins (LNF Racing VW Polo) and Reno van Heerden (Taurus VW Polo) stranded on the side of the track. A short safety car period allowed the marshals to remove the debris and broken cars before racing got underway again. De Lange led the way from Garland with Scholtz and du Toit in third and fourth. Du Toit worked his way up to second but, although he set the fastest lap of the race, he couldn’t close the gap to de Lange and had to settle for second. Garland took the final podium position from Scholtz. Trevor Stringer brought his Citrine Designs Peugeot 206 home in fifth with Tiaan Smith (Javrec/SPS racing VW Golf) in sixth.
Class B pole-sitter Roos was an early retirement when his Polo overheated, leaving Pillay and Martin to fight for the lead. They pulled away from the rest of the Class B pack with Pillay trying everything he has learned in his short motorsport career to stay ahead of Martin. He was able to hang on until the final lap when he made a mistake that let Martin through. A couple of corners from the end he ran wide which let Forget and Zane van Zyl (Credit Guarantee VW Golf) through to complete the podium with Martin. Pillay crossed the line in fourth with Ishmael Baloyi (Trans Africa Racing Honda Civic) the last classified finisher in fifth.
Nathi Msimanga (Squadra Corse VW Polo) led the way in Class C after the safety car returned to the pits, but Dannhauser soon found a way through and went on to open a commanding lead, which he held until the flag. Msimanga held on to take second ahead of Craig Priestley (Tactical Fluid Ford Laser) with Roux van der Colff (Alimtech Waterproofing/Alignment Masters Ford Laser) just ahead of Reobaka Komane (Squadra Corse VW Polo) in fourth. Robert Stoltz nursed his Episerve/Jestik/EBC Opel Kadett, which was damaged in the first lap incident, home in sixth. Nolan Fleetwood (Electro Whizz VW Passat) took Class D.
There was more drama at the start of the second race when de Lange out braked himself into the first corner and made heavy contact with Garland, dropping both down the field. This allowed Scholtz and du Toit to get away at the front of the field but Scholtz suffered a broken side shaft which brought his race to a premature end. Du Toit was then able to open a huge gap at the front, taking victory by over 16 seconds. De Lange worked his way back through the field to end up in third behind Garland with Smith and Stringer in fourth and fifth respectively.
Class B front runners Pillay, Roos and Martin all failed to finish the second race leaving Forget and van Zyl to fight it out for the top step of the podium, which eventually went to Forget. Baloyi brought his Civic home in third. Dannhauser again had to get past a Squadra Corse Polo to take the Class C lead, this time it was Komane who led in the early stages. While he couldn’t open as big a gap as he did in the first heat, Danhhauser took another comfortable win. Komane hung on to take second ahead of Priestley who got the better of a mid-race battle with van der Colff, who finished in fourth. Msinmaga and Stoltz rounded out the top six. Fleetwood again took Class D.
In the overall standings, du Toit took Class A from de Lange and Garland while Forget took Class B from van Zyl and Baloyi. Class C went the way of Dannhauser with Msimanga and Priestley joining him on the podium. Fleetwood took the Class D trophy.
The Car Care Clinic SuperHatch Championship moves back to Zwartkops Raceway for the next round which takes place on Saturday, 17 August.