Bailey takes scratch, van Niekerk handicap honours in Pretoria
Historic Racing South Africa’s classes once again delivered spectacular and dramatic racing when the series visited Zwartkops on Saturday. Peter Bailey took HRSA Sports, GT and Saloons victory, while Willem van Niekerk’s Marauder took the day’s win in the whirlwind Charlies SuperSpar Pursuit races.
Bailey made his intentions known right up front when he was the only driver to qualify at under the 1 minute ten second bracket in his 1974 Bailey Cars Porsche 911, before making off to a 12 second win over Andre van der Merwe’s similar Evapco 911 RSR. Behind them it was a battle of the wailing Mazda rotaries as Johann Smith’s ’76 JMS Racing Capella RS overcame Deon van Vuuren’s ‘67 Hoosier Supa Quick Brentwood Mazda R100, with third Class A man George Avvakoumides next up in his ‘74 Liqui-Moly Porsche 911 RSR.
He had the Class D lead pack all over him, as Jannie van Rooyen’s wieldy ’76 VW Scirocco held off Mike O’Sullivan’s East Coast Classics 1973 Chevy SS and Stuart Konig’s Northern Bolts and Tool Pro AutoScirocco, which was under the watchful eye of dad Fred Konig’s ’74 Nothen Bolts and Tool Porsche RSR, but only after he’d broken away from Class E winner’s Neil Lobb ’76 Fiat 131.
Class D runners, Sophos Pantazis’ Datsun 240Z and Rene Janse van Rensburg’s SVTech Ford Escort were next up ahead of class E runner up Daniel Lotter’s Killarney Gardens Spares Ford Escort MK1, Class A man Stefan Puschavez’s Porsche 911 RS and the returning Djurk Venter’s Class B winning Road to Race Ford Capri Perana.
Sean Hepburn’s ’75 AA Datsun 1200 Deluxe held Steve Pickering’s ’71 Porsche 914 for the Class F win ahead of Devon Martin’s Datsun GX and Class G winner, John Simpson’s 1965 Evoke Alfa GT Sprint, Richard Pott’s similar Class E machine, Les McLeod’s Merc 280CE and Class G trio Stan Stacey’s Alfa GTV 6, Jan Jacobs Olifantsfontein Training Alfa Romeo GT Junior and Harm Beens’ SNR Ford Escort. Class F men Andre Dannhauser’s Pro Auto Rubber Corolla SR5 and Kirsten Venter’s R2R Escort and EFB Malan’s Renault 10 were next up.
Bailey’s task was made easier with Andre van der Merwe taking an early shower to leave Smith to second ahead of Class C rival van Vuuren. He held Class D winner, Jannie van Rooyen, O’Sullivan and Class A pair Fred Konig and Stuart Konig off, ahead of Class E winner Lobb, Janse van Rensburg, Pantazis, Lotter, Class F victor Dave Leyshon’s Scirocco after Hepburn retired, Djurk Venter, Puschavez and G winner Simpson. Pickering, Roux, Martin, McLeod, Beens, Dannhauser, Kirsten Venter, Jacobs and Malan followed in that order.
Peter Bailey took his second overall HRSA win on the trot as he took Class A from Avvakoumides and Konig. Djurk Venter claimed the B trophy and Smith beat van Vuuren to the Class C win. Jannie van Rooyen won Class D from O’Sullivan and Stuart Konig. Lobb was unfortunately found underweight, handing the Class E trophy to Lotter from Roux; Steve Pickering emerged the Class F winner from McLeod and Dannhauser and John Simpson took Class G from Beens and Jacobs.
It was dramatic as usual in the handicap Charlies SuperSpar HRSA Pursuit series when all of the first race top three lapped quicker than their break-out times and Rob van Aarle’s Datsun, Gerrit Murray’s and Stan Stacey’s Alfa Romeos were excluded to hand the top three places to Modified Fines class trio Willem van Niekerk’s Marauder, Frans Venter Nissan 280ZX and Johan Smith’s Nissan Skyline. Trophy winner Tegan Leyshon’s VW Scirocco and Fines class winner Bert van Aarle’s Mazda MX5 were next up.
Machiel Oberholzer’s Mercedes, Wynand du Plessis’ Porsche and Andre Hattingh’s Mercedes followed, ahead of Devon Martin’s Datsun GX, Riaan Roux’s Scirocco, Tihan van Rooyen’s Porsche 924, Les McLoed Merc and the spinning Sean Hepburn’s Datsun, while Althea Pretorius’ Exa, Harm Beens Jr.’s Escort and Werner Hartzenberg’s Porsche closed off the finishers. Clive Winterstein’s 57 Porsche joined the breakout excluded.
Rob van Aarle suffered a second breakout penalty to also lose the second race win along with third placed finisher Tegan Leyshon’s Scirocco. That handed the win to brother Bert van Aarle from Smith, van Niekerk and Hattingh. Murray, McLoed, Hartzenberg, Oberholzer, du Plessis Snr and Martin followed, with Tihan van Rooyen next up Frans Venter, Hepburn, Stacey, Beens, Winterstein and Pretorius.
So, Willem van Niekerk took the day in the Marauder in a Modified Fine’s 1-2 from Johan Smith with Fines winner Bert van Aarle third from Andre Hattingh, Machiel Oberholzer and Frans Venter as Teegan Leyshon won the Trophy class overall.
Like the scratch classes, the Charlies SuperSpar competition was once very close, making the HRSA classes all the more interesting in the lead up to the next round and season’s premier Passion of Speed races back at Zwartkops 18-20 June. Expect that to be a humdinger!