What Passion for Speed long preview
Where Zwartkops Raceway, Pretoria
When 26 – 27 January 2024
Community South Africa National
Epic Formula 1 legends add to Zwartkops allure
The 2023 South African circuit racing season may yet be drawing to a close, but one of the country’s favourite race weekends, the annual Zwartkops Passion for Speed is already gearing up for the weekend of 26 and 27 January 2024. It promises to be among one of the best Pretoria historic racing festival weekends yet!
There will as always be an incredible selection of Passion for Speed highlights for 2024, but among the most exciting must be the International Pre-’65 Historic Grand Prix Association race. It has attracted a magnificent field of cars that not only defined grand prix history, but also shaped South African motorsport at the time. Legendary fails to quantify this pack.
Christian Dumolin’s 1954 Maserati 250F was for instance driven by Juan Manuel Fangio, Stirling Moss, Carroll Shelby, Umberto Maglioli, and F1’s first lady driver, Maria-Teresa de Filippis and in period. Yes, all of them! Andy Willis’ BRM P261 meanwhile won the 1964 Monaco and US Grands Prix in Graham Hill’s capable hands, and Phillip Buhofer drives an ex-Jim Clark 1966 Lotus 44 Climax.
Most of the touring single seaters however also had a significant role in South the African Formula 1 championship of the early 1960s. Michael Gans is bringing the multiple South African championship ex-John Love 1964 Tasman Cooper T79 Climax home. That’s the car that Love against all odds so nearly won the 1967 South African Grand Prix with at Kyalami.
Stephan Jobstl’s 1962 Lotus 24 Climax V8 is another car with great South African history. Initially raced by Jack Brabham as a stopgap before he built his own grand prix cars, former SA champion Syd van der Vyver bought the 24 to race locally, albeit without very much luck.
Geoff Underwood’s 1961Cooper T56/59 Alfa is the actual car that Trevor Blokdyk drove to victory in the 1963 Total Cup at Zwartkops in 1962. Eddy Perk is bringing Ernie Pieterse’s 1961 Heron Alfa back home. Steve Hart’s 1959 Cooper T51 Maserati is the sister to the Scuderia Lupini car that John Love, Doug Serrurier and Trevor Blokdyk raced in SA in the ‘60s.
Mark Shaw’s 1961 Lotus 21 is similar to the car that Jim Clark won the Rand Grand Prix with in that year, and which Neville Lederle drove to consecutive South African Drivers’ championships. Other significant cars include Justin Maeers’ 1958 Cooper T49 Monaco sports racer, Ben Maeers, Charlie Martin, and Rudi Friedrichs’ ‘lowline’ 1960 Cooper T53 Climaxes, Eric Staes’ ‘62 Lotus 18/23 Climax, Lukas Buhofer’s Lola and Richard Smeeton’s unique 1963 Wainer.
Not to be outdone, the local South African Historic Single Seaters can also be expected to deliver great interest. Expect a few rasping rotary former SA championship Formula Atlantics to join the ranks alongside several significant Formula Fords, Vees and other machines that made local racing history over the years.
Moving on to classic sportscar action, Pre’74 The International Sports Prototypes usually attract a strong overseas entry to join the local Springbok Series Lolas, Chevrons and the like. While not all were confirmed at the time of writing, stunning prospects include Le Mans Ford GT40s, Can Am McLaren M1As and more to add even more variety to an already priceless weekend.
They will be joined by the local regulars and a few visiting GT Porsches and the likes, and a gang of rumbling Trans Am V8 Touring Cars. Talking V8s, Many of the Sports, GTs and V8s will also race in another Passion for Speed highlight, the prestigious annual 45 minute Le Mans Sports & GT Tourist Trophy that regularly attracts Cobras, Daytonas, Lolas and GT40s.
Passion for Speed would not be Passion for Speed if it were not for the monster Marlboro Crane Hire Pre’66 Legends of the 9 Hour Production Cars. Rest assured that the giant Galaxies, Impalas, Novas, Falcon Thunderbolts, Fairlanes, Mustangs, Mercurys, Studebakers, Plymouths and Camaros will as always be out to thrill the festival crowd.
Those regular Passion for Speed attractions will be complemented by a full program of local Historic and contemporary races to keep all tastes satisfied. Ben Morgenrood Group HRSA Sprint, Pursuit and Youngtimers, International Race Supplies & Roofsure MHCC Historics, Marlboro Crane Hire Little Giants and Lotus Challenge will all commence their 2024 seasons at Passion for Speed.
And for the modern race fan, the G&H Transport Extreme SuperCars Lamborghinis, Porsches, Ferraris, McLarens and the rest, and that swarm of the BMW M Performance Parts Race Series is certain to entertain with best racing, as always.
There is of course far more to the Zwartkops Passion for Speed than just track action. Special guests and the backbone of this legendary annual weekend, David, and Liz Piper once again fly in from England, and the Passion for Speed pays tribute to the great Basil van Rooyen. Don’t forget all the regular Zwartkops race weekend parades, catering, spectacle, and sideshows too.
So, be sure to diarise 26 and 27 January 2024 as the Zwartkops Passion for Speed right now. Log on to computicket-boxoffice.com to buy your discounted tickets, or pay R220 per adult, R140 for students and kids under 12 free at the gate. Log on to zwartkops.co.za, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 071 670 0585 for more info.
Issued on behalf of Zwartkops Raceway
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