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What Investchem Formula 1600 Round 2 Report
Where Kyalami Grand Prix Circuit
When Saturday 13 April 2024
Community South Africa National

Jagger takes an Investchem Formula 1600 double

Jagger Robertson may just be two races into his Investchem Formula 1600 career, but the former Polo Cup campaigner now leads South Africa’s title chase after a dominant Kyalami home track Extreme Festival double win off pole position on Saturday.

Robertson started the weekend on the front foot by taking a dominant second pole position in as many meetings starts aboard his Liqui Moly Mygale. He fended off two more young chargers, KC Ensor Smith’s African Heating version, and Karabo Malemela in his KMFT Morita car. Cape Town lad Jason Coetzee was fourth quickest in his Mint Wrapworks entry.

He lined up ahead of Investchem driver Siyabonga Mankonkwana, who sat alongside DV Building Supplies pilot Alex Vos on the third row. Veteran Magnificent Paints & Hardware driver Nicholas van Weely started seventh from Durban Production X Killarney opening race sensation Shrien Naidoo, Metal Used rookie, Renzo Ribeiro, Ewan Holtzhausen’s Bee Tee car, Mantellis lad Storm Lanfear, and NBR rookie Mikel Bezuidenhout.

Andrew Horne meanwhile made a fine Formula Ford Kent comeback as he substituted for Ian Schofield on compassionate leave in the Investchem Mygale. He lined up behind the Formula 1600 grid and ahead of Kent rivals, Investchem teammates Allen Meyer’s Van Diemen and Rick Morris in a Mygale. Ron van Weely followed in his Magnificent Paints and Hardware van Diemen from Duncan Vos’ DV Building Supplies Swift.

Scheduled for a dawn start, the first race became more of a breakfast time affair as marshals extracted a car off the previous race barriers. Robertson made no mistakes when the lights went finally out, to lead Malemela, Ensor Smith, the tussling Mankonkwana and Coetzee and a spat between Vos, Naidoo, Lanfear and van Weely. Robertson duly drew away from his pursuers as Horne led Morris and Graham Hepburn’s Qualipak JHB van Diemen from the back after missing qualifying in the Kents.

While the top five stretched out, van Weely, Vos carrying a damaged front wing, and Lanfear entertained in their fight for sixth. That top five was however not yet done as Ensor Smith put Malemela under pressure and Coetzee was all over the back of Mankonkwana. Coetzee succeeded, Smith not, as the chequered flag flew after all of six laps.

So a delighted Jagger Robertson took his maiden Investchem Formula 1600 win from Karabo Malemela, KC Ensor Smith, Jason Coetzee and Siyabonga Mankonkwana. Shrien Naidoo was a lonely sixth from Nicholas van Weely, Alex Vos and Storm Lanfear. Mikel Bezuidenhout turned the tables on Ewan Holtzhausen and Renzo Ribeiro for tenth. Andrew Horne was untroubled en route to Formula Ford Kent honours from Graham Hepburn, who nicked a late second from evergreen Rick Morris, Duncan Vos, Ron van Weely and Allen Meyer.

Robertson was on pole again for race 2 by dint of his second fastest qualifying lap from Ensor-Smith, Malemela, Mankonkwana and quickest man in race 1, Coetzee. Jagger made another perfect getaway to lead Ensor Smith, a fast-starting Coetzee, and a tussling Vos, who also had a great opening lap, and Mankonkwana. The latter duo however touched and spun in unison as he dropped back down the field.

That allowed Mikel Bezuidenhout, who had already made up several places, to jump another two up to a surprising fifth from Malemela, who bounced back from a slow start. Nicholas van Weely followed from Ewan Holtzhausen, Storm Lanfear, Vos and Mankonkwana. Malemela then found a way past Bezuidenhout a few laps later, while Vos and Mankonkwana jumped Lanfear.

Up front, meanwhile, Ensor Smith kept Robertson honest throughout but he was unable to fluster Jagger, who went on to complete the double for the day from KC. Coetzee came under late pressure from the recovering Malemela, with van Weely holding a watching brief behind them and ahead of Bezuidenhout and Vos. Malemela was however docked ten seconds for a jumped start to drop to seventh behind van Weely, Bezuidenhout and Vos. Holtzhausen followed from Mankonkwana, Lanfear and Ribiero.

Graham Hepburn caught and then fought his way past Andrew Horne in a battle that lasted several laps before Graham cleared off to take an ultimately easy Formula Ford Kent win with Duncan Vos third from Rick Morris, Ronald van Weely and Allen Meyer. That was enough for Hepburn to take the day from Horne and Morris, while double winner Robertson took Investchem Formula 1600 overall honours from Ensor Smith, Coetzee Malemela, and van Weely.

All that sees Jagger Robertson into a provisional four-point championship lead over KC Ensor-Smith, with Jason Coetzee another two points further back after four races. The next round of the Investchem Formula 1600 championship remains in Gauteng at Pretoria’s tight and twisty Zwartkops Raceway’s National Extreme Festival on Saturday 18 May. The perfect stimulus for thrilling racing. Make it a date!

Issued on behalf of Investchem Formula 1600

Photography by: Colin Windell

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