Historic Racing delivers cracking action at Phakisa
The Historic Racing South Africa away weekend to Phakisa in the Free State delivered some exciting and giant-killing action as Peter Bailey’s Porsche came out on top in the Sports, GT and Saloon races with an angry Escort in close attendance. The Charlies Super Spar Pursuit series meanwhile bounced back from a mass break-out in race 1 to see Richard Tudor-Owen and his Mercedes-Benz take a rare double race win.
It was all about Porsche 911 Carrera RS up front as Pre-90 Sports & GT trio Andre van der Merwe, Peter Bailey and George Avvakoumides made off up front. Van der Merwe then hit trouble mid distance to allow a delighted Bailey to take the win from Alan Green’s ultra-quick Pre-80 Saloon Class D Ford Escort, which prevented a Porsche clean sweep by holding Fred Konig’s 911 off for third.
Green also beat Deon van Vuuren’s Class C Mazda R100 and closest class rival Stuart Konig’s Scirocco. Class E winner Terence Ladner’s Ford Capri was next up as he held off Class D third and fourth men Andre ten Napel’s Scirocco and Rene Janse van Rensburg’s Escort, and second in Class E Riaan Roux ahead of Class F winner Sean Hepburn in his newly yellow liveried AA Datsun 1200 Deluxe.
Devon Martin’s Class G winning Datsun had Les McLeod’s Mercedes-Benz 280 Coupe, Harm Beens Ford Escort and Jan Jacobs’ Alfa Romeo Sprint in pursuit ahead of class H winner Rob van Aarle in an entertaining tussle toward the back of the field.
The second heat was without doubt the pick of the day as Bailey made off up front but was never far enough ahead to play it safe. Initially he came under attack from Andre van der Merwe, before his Porsche faltered again. That left Allan Green’s Class D Escort, to pull off a giant killing act as he caught, passed and held George Avvakoumides’ Porsche off for second as the lead trio crossed the line covered by just over a second.
Behind them Deon van Vuuren cruised to an untroubled Class C win ahead of Fred and Stuart Konig as Ladner took Class E and Hepburn Class F. McLeod, Beens and Jacobs entertained with a close Class G battle and van Aarle took Class H again. Overall, Bailey beat Avvakoumides and giant-Killer Green, who took Class D, while van Vuuren won Class C, Ladner Class E, Hepburn F, MacLeod G and van Aarle G.
Run on handicap, the Charlies Super Spar Pursuit series thrilled as always as Fines class man Richard Tudor-Owen and his Mercedes-Benz 190E held on for the first race win ahead of Althea Pretorius. Modified Fines Nissan Exa and Trophy class trio Devon Martin’s Datsun GX, Harm Beens Jr’s Ford Escort and Cam McLeod’s Mercedes-Benz 280 Coupe. They were the only five to qualify after the rest of the field all broke out of their handicap brackets!
So, none of Riaan Roux’s Trophy Volkswagen Scirocco or Modified six, Kola de Klerk’s Nissan 300ZX, Wynand du Plessis Sr’s Porsche 944 S2, Werner Hartzenberg in a Porsche 916, Kyle Murray’s Datsun panel van, Lauren van Aarle’s Ford Escort MK1, were classified.
Tudor-Owen went on to do the double with a second race win too, in his Mercedes ahead of du Plessis, Hartzenberg, de Klerk, Pretorius, Martin, Murray and Beens; Lauren van Aarle and Les Mcloed. Kyle Murray was the only driver to break out and Riaan Roux spectacularly rolled his Scirocco out of contention.
So the only Fines car in the race, Richard Tudor-Owen won the day and the class, with Modified Fines winner Althea Pretorius second and Trophy winner Devon Martin third ahead of Beens, du Plessis Sr. and Hartzenberg. The Historic Racing South Africa circus visits Zwartkops in Pretoria next on Saturday 22 May.