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What Extreme Festival 2024 Round 4 Report
Where Aldo Scribante, Gqeberha EP
When Saturday 29 June 2024
Community South Africa National

Maiden winners, surprises aplenty at Gqeberha Festival

Gqeberha’s midseason Extreme Festival not only delivered much splendid action at the Aldo Scribante racetrack, but surprise results and maiden winners aplenty made for an exceptional race weekend.

The surprises started in the South African Touring Cars. Cape lad Julian van der Watt and his Volkswagen Golf converted pole position into a lights to flag first race win under pressure from teammate Robert Wolk’s BMW and then Nathi Msimanga’s Gazoo Corolla. Both however fell off in chase to leave Michael van Rooyen and Saood Variawa’s Toyotas second and third from BMW men Wolk and Andy Schofield. Rookie Anthony Pretorius then won race 2 off pole position, while Wolk firmed his title advantage in second from van Rooyen, Msimanga, Variawa, van der Watt and Schofield.

Another Capetonian, Tate Bishop led the opening SATC SupaCup race from lights to flag off pole position to take his maiden victory from Jonathan Mogotsi. Keegan and Jason Campos and Masters winner JP van der Walt chased them home. Charl Visser made a brave move on Bishop into the first turn of the second race to take control from the front with the widest car on track. Keegan Campos made best of the wild dice behind to pip Bishop for second from Jason Campos, Mogotsi and Bradley Liebenberg’s Toyota.

Arnold Neveling was another to shock as the Audi R8 driver finally toppled the usually dominant Stuart White’s Lamborghini to win the opening of three Extreme Supercars driven by Dunlop races. Jonathan du Toit and Xolile Letlaka’s similar Lamborghini Huracáns followed from Charl Arangies and Ant Blunden in a Porsche. Neveling then made sure it was no fluke with the second and third race wins too, over White, du Toit, Letlaka, Arangies, Blunden and Gianni Giannoccaro each time.

In one of two classes to go to championship form over the weekend, Jason Loosemore took a double Astron Energy Polo Cup win from title rival Nathan Victor each time. Kyle Visser made a monster start and then held Hannes Scheepers off for third from Tyler Robertson and Ethan Coetzee. Victor had to work hard for second in heat 2 from a feisty Coetzee, home hero Jeandre Marais, Scheepers and Mo Karodia. Derick Smalberger made Wayne Masters work for the first Astron Energy Polo Masters win with John Kruger third, before Smalberger took heat 2 from Masters and Kruger.

In one of the biggest upsets, KC Ensor Smith turned the 2024 South African National Investchem Formula 1600 championship on its head when he took a double win off pole position to wrest the championship lead from Jagger Robertson. Robertson’s weekend was ruined by a clutch failure that forced him to miss race 1 as Karabo Malemela nicked second from Jason Coetzee, Sia Mankonkwana, Shrien Naidoo and Storm Lanfear. Robertson was back for race 2 but could do nothing to stop Ensor Smith. Behind them, Coetzee was third from Malemela, impressive Mikel Bezuidenhout and Mankonkwana. Graham Hepburn won both Kent races from Rick Morris and Duncan Vos.

Damion Purificati was another surprise winner in the SunBet ZX10 Masters motorcycles. He took advantage of runaway championship leader Clinton Seller skipping the Scribante weekend to lead Trevor Westman, David Enticott and Graeme van Breda, with Hein McMahon to the opening win with Adriaan van Dalen and Cristian Caravello in chase. David Enticott went two better to take race 2 from day winner Purificati, class B winner van Breda and Westman, with McMahon, James Barson and van Dalen next up.

Dhivyen Naidoo beat Jayden Goosen, Judd Bertholdt, Uzair Khan and Josh Moore in the opening Volkswagen Rookie Cup race. The karting graduates then put up a thrilling second race show before Goosen broke away to beat Bertholdt, Khan, overall winner Naidoo and Moore. In the other race to run to form, GR 86 lad Dawie van der Merwe continued his domination of the Toyota Gazoo Racing Cup ahead of Niko Zafiris and Dylan Pragji. GR Corolla Media winner Sean Nurse was sixth from Yaris Cup winner Paul de Vos. The second heat produced identical results.

The second half of the 2024 Extreme Festival season resumes in the Eastern Cape for the traditional fifth round at the East London Grand Prix Circuit’s on Saturday 27 July.

Issued on behalf of Extreme Festival

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