Jean-Pierre van der Walt heads to the 2023 Simola Hillclimb, aiming to secure a third consecutive King of the Hill title as the prestigious event is once again hosted in Knysna from 5-7 May.
The current Global Touring Cars SupaCup competitor, who debuted in the time-attack event in 2021, holds a 100% record in the Road & Supercar class. Both titles came with Porsche power. His 2023 campaign will again see him behind his Porsche 911 Turbo S. He took a similar title on debut at the 2022 Kyalami Grand Prix Circuit Festival of Motoring. The 2022 Simola Hillclimb saw him complete the weekend with his best time of 44.562 seconds in the final shootout, and Van der Walt is confident that this year’s edition can see an improved time.
“With last year’s event being the first proper competitive shakedown in the Porsche 911 Turbo S, we will look to improve our time this year,” says Van der Walt. “During our run last year, we had a hair-raising moment at the start of the course, so we know we still have some time in hand. It also taught us that things could go wrong at any time. Fortunately, it didn’t, and we have considered that lesson while preparing for this year’s campaign. We will also be up against a high-quality field in an event where you only get one attempt at glory. I love this type of pressure and look forward to making it another successful outing.”
His regular 2023 motorsport corporate partners, Platinum Wheels, Sparco Africa, My Score Hero, Tyremart Menlyn, ISSC, and Supercar Cellar Storage, will again back his campaign. In addition, Michelin Tyres South Africa, who provided the rubber for his previous campaigns, will again be on board, along with True Lubricants and RACE!. Guni Wheel SA is also a welcome addition to this year’s battle up the hill. The Swedish-based company Golden Concepts will be the 2023 naming rights partner for the team and is set to host a competition relating to Van der Walt’s campaign, with more details to be communicated.
While the event will kick off with its usual Classic Car Friday, the King of the Hill program will take place on Saturday and Sunday. Saturday morning will see a host of practice runs, followed by the first half of qualifying runs. The final few qualifying runs will continue on Sunday before the final shootout.
The event will be streamed live on the Simola Hillclimb website (www.simolahillclimb.com) or alternatively, you can view it on the SABC Plus app (available for free on the Google App Store).
To stay up to date with Van der Walt’s progress, please follow the Platinum Wheels Racing Facebook page by tapping on the link – https://www.facebook.com/PW.Racing.SA
Published by: Motorsport Fanatix – Raymond Cornwell
Picture Caption: The Golden Concepts Porsche 911 Turbo S of JP van der Walt
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