Formula Ford Kyalami round 8 preview

Reigning Formula Ford Champion Robert Wolk (AfintaPart Mygale) can secure his second title in succession at Kyalami this weekend (24 September) in round eight of the Vodacom Power Tour. The 20-year old Wolk currently leads the series by 37...

Reigning Formula Ford Champion Robert Wolk (AfintaPart Mygale) can secure his second title in succession at Kyalami this weekend (24 September) in round eight of the Vodacom Power Tour.

The 20-year old Wolk currently leads the series by 37 points, and needs to leave Kyalami with a 45-point lead to ensure another title. Therefore, all he needs to do is score eight points more than his closest competitor.

Making his task easier is that second placed competitor, Stevie Morris, has moved across to the Production Car Championship, and will not be competing in the Formula Ford races.

That leaves third-placed competitor David Veringa (Sabat Batteries Van Diemen) as the only driver with a mathematical chance of depriving Wolk of the title. However, his chances are slim, with Wolk requiring just two points more than the former Formula Vee champion to be victorious.

Wolk once again experienced a mixed day at the last round at Zwartkops Raceway. He crashed his car in the morning warm-up session, forcing him to miss the first race of the day. However, with his car repaired he recovered to score a good win in race two. His track record at Kyalami is superb, and with three wins in four races at the circuit this year he will be gunning to make it wins nine and ten of the season.

Veringa, last season's championship runner-up, has not enjoyed a good year. His form has been patchy, but after changing chassis mid-season, he finally scored his first win of the year at East London two rounds ago. He followed this up with a second and fourth place at Zwartkops, and will be wanting nothing other than a win or two this weekend to move him ahead of Morris in the points, and keep his slim championship chances alive.

Brett Maybery (Playstation2 Van Diemen) will also be competing this weekend - one of his rare appearances. He has become somewhat of a Kyalami specialist over the past few years, blitzing to many victories. He demonstrated in the last round that he could also win at other circuits when he took victory in the first race, and then finished second in the next. He will pose a serious threat to Wolk and the others for the race wins.

17-year old Donovan Howard (Associated Auto / Wap Alto Mygale) scored his first overall win at East London, but did not win either of the day's two races as two second place finishes were enough for the win. He qualified third and set the fastest lap of the day at Zwartkops, but an off-circuit excursion early in race one left him with just one seventh as his best result. He will be desperate to score his first proper win before the year is complete.

Young Jayde Kruger (Wap Alto Mygale) once again proved at Zwartkops that he has blinding pace in qualifying, and followed up with better consistency in the races than he has shown for most of the year. The 16-year old qualified superbly to take pole position, and then drove to two solid third place finishes. He is definitely a threat to the leaders, and his first win can't be too far away.

Veringa, Howard and Kruger are separated by just eight points in the championship race, and they are all fierce young competitors. Fireworks can be expected from them this weekend.

Armani Jamrozinski (Diesel / Pilot Freight Van Diemen) is another who has battled with consistency this year, perhaps as a result of not contesting all the races. He scored his first win of the year at East London, but at Zwartkops the 18-year old could only manage one sixth place finish. There is no doubt that he also has the pace to win, but it's never a sure thing that he will be in the leading battle.

Marc Murray (Rotax Max Challenge Van Diemen) enjoyed a good outing at his home circuit last time out, and has shown improvement in recent races. He has yet to display the pace to run at the front, but he is increasing competitive.

Sister Jennifer, Ford's Development Driver, will be eager to show her worth. She missed the last round as she competed in the Formula Women Nations Cup in the UK, where she narrowly missed out on victory in both races and finished second overall.

Driving a Ford Credit/Ford Racing Van Diemen she has suffered a frustrating year with mechanical and set-up problems with the new car. The team has contracted a new mechanic, which it hopes will cure the problems. She has proven on many occasions that she is capable of winning races should the car allow - hopefully she will be in a position to do so this weekend.

An interesting addition to the grid this weekend will be Rick Morris, the father of Stevie. Rick is a Formula Ford legend in the UK where he performed brilliant feats over many years. He competes here sporadically when visiting to watch his son racing, and is still competitive. Expect him to give the midfield runners a good run for their money. <pre> Championship points after round 7: 1) Robert Wolk 107 2) Steven Morris 70 3) David Veringa 64 4) Donovan Howard 57 5) Jayde Kruger 56 6) Armani Jamrozinski 40

-ford racing.za-

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