Zwartkops race report

SASCAR ace stars in SAMCAR 2001.0609 Barry de Klerk SASCAR star Johan Fourie dominated on his return to the Wesbank SA Modified Car series at Zwartkops raceway. Fourie won both races, the only blemish to his weekend being that Ben Morgenrood...

SASCAR ace stars in SAMCAR 2001.0609

Barry de Klerk

SASCAR star Johan Fourie dominated on his return to the Wesbank SA Modified Car series at Zwartkops raceway. Fourie won both races, the only blemish to his weekend being that Ben Morgenrood beat him to pole.

Fourie, whose car was run by SASCAR constructor Jimmy Price, returned to the Wesbank V8 series in former champion Gary Formato's car, this being the start of a campaign to give him international exposure. According to Price the Wesbank series is a very competitive, helped by manufacturer involvement in that series.

The Zwartkops races introduced superpole style individual qualifying runs to the Wesbank series. Veteran Ben Morgenrood was fastest, followed by the similar Mustang of Fourie, then the Camaro of Botma and the Opel Astra of production and touring car ace Shaun Watson-Smith.

Races

Heat one saw Morgenrood lead from pole, followed by Fourie. For 14 laps the Fourie tried to pass Morgenrood, managing on more than one occasion to come alongside at the hairpin, with Morgenrood's better acceleration enabling him to stay ahead.

Larry Wilford and Sarel van der Merwe followed the side by side racing leaders. At this stage it was Ford Mustangs first to fourth. Behind the Ford cavalcade the two Opels sandwiched Hepburn's Camaro, with Watson Smith leading the trio. After an unsuccessful Hepburn move on Watson-Smith, the Opels were left to battle for 5th.

Finally, just as it appeared that Morgenrood had the race won, persistence for Fourie, when on the last turn he got on the inside of Morgenrood, and forced his way past.to win by a length.

Heat 2 was a Johan Fourie benefit. He won comfortably from pole. Behind him came Ben Morgenrood, fighting off Hennie Groenewald. However, Groenewald ended up 11th after receiving a 30 second penalty for passing Van der Merwe under yellow flags caused by the Ray Wilford crash.

This crash led to a pace car period, and just after the race went green Hepburn punted Joubert off the track trying to overtake, which moved Joubert to the tail of the field. He was joined at the back by Gugu Zulu's SASOL Ford Mustang which had to pit with loose bodywork. Zulu's team mate Van der Merwe had a bad day at the office, failing to overcome a below par qualifying performance.

Including the SASCAR races a few weeks back, Fourie has now won 4 out of 4 races at Zwartkops.

The next two rounds will be at the Phakisa Freeway on 30 June.

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Superpole times

Ben Morgenrood Ford Mustang 1:01.572

Johan Fourie            Ford Mustang            1:01.609
Riaan Botma             Chevrolet Camaro        1:01.900
Shaun Watson-Smith      Opel Astra Coupe        1:01.935
Larry Wilford           Ford Mustang            1:02.147
Hennie Groenewald       Chevrolet Camaro        1:02.237

Heat 1 results

Johan Fourie            Ford Mustang
Ben Morgenrood          Ford Mustang
Larry Wilford           Ford Mustang
Sarel van der Mrwe      Ford Mustang
Shaun Watson-Smith      Opel Astra Coupe
Deon Joubert            Opel Astra Coupe

Heat 2 Results

Johan Fourie            Ford Mustang
Ben Morgenrood          Ford Mustang
Riaan Botma             Chevrolet Camaro
Larry Wilford           Ford Mustang
Derek van Blerk         Ford Mustang
Shaun Watson-Smith      Opel Astra Coupe

Point Standings top 10

Ben Morgenrood          110
Sarel van der Merwe     101
Willie Hepburn           84
Larry Wilford            80
Riaan Botma              71
Deon Joubert             41
Shaun Watson-Smith       40
Johan Fourie             40
Derek van Blerk          39
Martin van Zummerin      38

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About this article
Series Stock car
Drivers Gary Formato , Shaun Watson-Smith , Sarel van der Merwe , Hennie Groenewald