Excitement is mounting in anticipation of the start of the 2018 Extreme Festival South African National Championship at Kyalami’s Motorsport Festival in two weeks time. The Saturday 24 March races come among much excitement as teams and drivers prepare for that all-important opening meeting, while the Kyalami Grand Prix Circuit is pulling out all the stops to make the blockbuster weekend one to remember.
Anticipation is running at fever pitch around the G & H Transport Extreme Supercars, which saw Charl Aranges’ blisteringly quick Aston Martin Vantage GT3 arrive to set a Great British cat among the established Ferrari, Porsche and Lamborghini pigeons, but we hear news of another new and completely different GT3 racer waiting in the wings to give them all a go. Should all the stars align in time to see that secret new supercar line up on the Kyalami grid in two weeks time. Roll on race day!
There another shroud of secrecy still surrounding the Sasol GTC line-up — we know all the existing cars will be there and that the Volkswagens tested looking ready for new colours last week, but will anyone be able to stop double champion Michael Stephen’s Audi this season — and will there be new and different cars racing there too? GTC2 continues with news that champion Keagan Masters will defend his title in the VW Motorsport Golf and there are also stories about new metal there. Bring it on…
There are also a few significant changes in the Investchem Formula 1600s, with a technical switch to new sequential gearboxes, while the champion this year will not only win the R200k grand prize, but also a fully paid trip to compete in the Mazda Road to Indy shootout in Phoenix, Arizona in December. And with champion Julian van der Watt already on that Road to Indy, who will pick up the man-to-beat mantle. We’d say Stuart White would be a good bet.
One class that definitely is all new for 2018 is the Engen Volkswagen Polo Cup, which switches to latest Polo GTIs with push-to-pass for the new season. The new cars were all delivered to the 24 drivers racing the 2018 series, with many already out testing, but we will have to wait and see if the change brings these challengers closer to champion Devin Robertson. There could be very well be a few surprises there too.
That will all be backed up by Invitational races for the old school rolling thunder V8 Supercars, National Challenge Red Square Kawasaki ZX 10 Masters Cup, Bridgestone Thunderbikes and Sub 10 motorcycles.
Kyalami’s off-track activities include a lunchtime grid walk where you can mingle with the drivers and get up-close to the race cars on the starting grid and you can experience both real and virtual action at the Pirelli dynamic handling track activation throughout the weekend or race in the Playstation trailers parked at Clubhouse Corner and the Main Grandstand.
Kyalami’s Kiddies Areas manned by child minders around the circuit at Clubhouse corner, on Boma Road and near the pits bring peace of mind for parents and fun for the tots with jumping castles, face painting, colouring-in, soft play and more. Refreshments, good food and top catering will be available and race fans are encouraged to bring and braai on Kyalami’s spectator embankments that offer excellent views of the Grand Prix Circuit.
Book now for Kyalami’s 24 March Motorsport Festival via iTickets at www.kyalamigrandprixcircuit.com at R70 for general entry with under-12s free. A pre-booked R650 Premium Package is available to the more discerning race aficionado and includes a full day pit pass, access to the premium viewing deck with live streaming, a premium lunch menu and pay bar, a complimentary race programme, a twin-pack of Kyalami wine as well as vehicle access to centre circuit VIP parking.
General tickets are available at the gate on race day but book online and find out more at www.kyalamigrandprixcircuit.com right now. See you at Kyalami!