David Jermy and Jeff Gable claimed a race win apiece in their Jacquet Racing van Diemens when they made their way down to Dezzi Raceway on the KwaZulu-Natal south coast for the fourth round of the 2017 Investchem Formula Ford Kent championship on Saturday, 5 August.
In the morning qualifying session, it was Matt Nash who put his Ray at the top of the time sheets lapping the 2.5 km circuit over a second quicker than Jermy. Gable was next quickest with James Reeves (Ray) in fourth place. Steve Venter (Turnfab Engineering / Manitou Swift) set the fifth fastest time, just a tenth quicker than Dalan Holton (Debella Finance van Diemen) with Gerald Wright (Swift) not far behind. Although Alex Vos qualified down in eighth, he was to take no further part in the day’s racing as a bearing failure during the session brought his race weekend to a premature end. An electrical fire early in the session meant championship leader Dean Venter (Turnfab Engineering / Manitou Swift) was unable to set a time while mechanical maladies kept Allen Meyer (van Diemen) in the pits.
The opening race was full of action but it seemed to be one that nobody wanted to win. Nash was the early leader despite a coming together with Jermy in the northern loop that dropped the latter to the back of the field. Nash was followed by Gable and Reeves until an off-track excursion dropped him down the field and allowed Gable to take over at the front. While that was happening Dean Venter and Jermy were working their way up to the leaders, but contact between them spoilt their progress.
Jermy recovered and made his way up to second, where it looked like he would stay, until a late mistake by Gable robbed him of the chance of his first Formula Ford Kent win. Jermy took the flag just over half a second ahead of Gable with Reeves filling the final step on the podium. After an eventful race Dean Venter had to settle for fourth ahead of Nash who had Meyer just behind him in sixth.
After his somewhat fortunate first race win, Jermy started race 2 from pole position but it seemed like he had used up all his luck in the first race. His steering wheel came apart on the opening lap and he was forced to pit for repairs. This left Gable out in front with Dean Venter and Nash trying to chase him down. Nash’s car cried enough shortly after half distance promoting Reeves to third, a position he held until the flag. While Venter was able to close the gap to Gable, he couldn’t get past and a very happy Gable took his first Formula Ford Kent win, as he put it “a race late.” Meyer took fourth ahead of Wright and Venter.
A second place and a win gave Gable the silverware for the day’s overall victory with Dean Venter second and Reeves in third.
Despite things not going exactly according to plan at Dezzi, Dean Venter has extended his championship lead to thirty points. Gable’s two good results have moved him up to second, three points ahead of defending champion Andrew Horne and Jermy who are locked together on 40 points.
The next round of the 2017 Investchem Formula Ford Kent championship takes place at Zwartkops Raceway in Pretoria on 16 September.
Published by: Paul Bedford
Picture Caption: Matt Nash leads David Jermy and Jeff Gable at the start of race 1
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