Port Elizabeth fans are set for a midwinter race feast when the South African national championship Extreme Circus comes to town for its annual visit to Aldo Scribante Saturday 15 June. In what’s set to be a celebration of EP racing success, the Extreme weekend is of course the chance locals have to support an extraordinary number of Port Elizabeth racers and teams winning at top level.
Nowhere is that more pertinent than in the premier Global Touring Cars, where not only does that championship comprise only of cars run by local teams, but two of the top three drivers are proudly Port Elizabeth drivers too. Local hero Simon Moss is the man to beat in his PE-run All Power Audi and his closest rivals are Jozi lad and another Keagan Masters and PE top gun Daniel Rowe in the Uitenhage-based factory Volkswagen Jettas.
They will however have the likes of Jozi driver Michael van Rooyen in a Toyota Corolla, Cape Town’s Johan Fourie (BMW) and another EP hero, Tschops Sipuka in the other Audi to deal with. Two more EP-prepared cars lead the GTC2 race too, with Bradley Liebenberg and Adrian Wood’s Volkswagen Golf GTIs leading Charl Smalberger’s similar car.
The Falken Polo Cup is sure to entertain and while there are no local drivers to cheer there, that series too has much to owe to the region with all cars built at Volkswagen Motorsport in Uitenhage. Jeffrey Kruger from Johannesburg is the man to beat there with three race wins out of six starts this year, but expect other race winners this year, Jozi lads Bradley Liebenberg and Chris Shorter and Cape kid Jurie Swart, as well as regular frontrunners Clinton Bezuidenhout, brothers Jason and Keegan Campos, Jonathan Mogotsi, Dario Busi and Matt Shorter to star.
The national 1000cc Superbikes are set to thrill as always with Clinton Seller’s Yamaha the bike to beat, but he has veteran Lance Isaacs (BMW) and David McFadden on another Yamaha, Allan-Jon Venter, Garrick Vlok and Dylan Barnard among those breathing down his neck. Blaze Baker has dominated 600cc Supersport this season, but he has the similar Yamahas of Kewyn Snyman and Jared Schultz, while local fans will be shouting for Ricardo Otto and Brandon Staffen and Dian Nelson are also in with a shout.
Single seater fans are in for a treat with Investchem Formula 1600 headed for Aldo, where Scott Temple holds all the cards over Nicholas Van Weely and Andrew Rackstraw, who will be keen to avoid jumping any starts after losing two wins to that fate so far this season. Also watch out for Siyabonga Mankonkwana, Tiago Rebelo, Andrew Schofield and Alex Gillespie among this lot, plus a possible PE wildcard.
The local Eastern Province Modified Saloons complete the Extreme Festival race program where Aldo and Silvio Scribante and their Audis may not have it all their usual way on 15 June. Not only will Bryn High be back in his similar machine, but Rudolf de Vos will be out in his thundering Historic racing Chevy Can Am and there is word of some out of town interference turning up too...
Overall championship leader Deon Slabbert and his turbo Polo are keen to continue their untroubled run in Class B as he fends Rufus Neetling’s BMW off in the title chase, but AWD duo Gordon Nolan’s Subaru and the luckless Kevin Kelly's Mitsubishi will be out to prove a point, while Johan Nel, Marais Ellis and George van Baalen will tussle in Class C. Stephen Aukamp (BMW) takes on Jeff Guscott (Porsche) in Class D, Daniel Bright (Golf) and Wickus Basson (BMW) fight for Class E and Theo Scholtz and Riaan van Hyssteen dice in Class F.
The Extreme Festival comes to town in two weeks time on 15 June, a great day’s action to plan for — find out more at amsc.co.za and on www.facebook.com/AldoScribanteRacetrack/.