Goldfields report 98-05-30

SA Championship Group N Saloons Race One - classes A, C and E The surprise of qualifying was the performance of Steve Wyndham who had been out of the series for a number of years. Driving a second Kaye Eddie Racing BMW 328, he took pole...

SA Championship Group N Saloons Race One - classes A, C and E

The surprise of qualifying was the performance of Steve Wyndham who had been out of the series for a number of years. Driving a second Kaye Eddie Racing BMW 328, he took pole position 0,2 sec ahead of team-mate, and regular driver, Anthony Taylor.

Wyndham led off the line at the start, but then missed a gear thereby allowing Taylor into the lead and Robby Smith (BMW 328) to grab second place with an audacious manoeuvre.

Smith's race did not last long, however, as an oil pipe pulled off the oil cooler down the back straight and discharged the contents of the sump onto the circuit. His retirement allowed Wyndham back into second and, although he sat on Taylor's tail for the remainder of the race, he did not attempt to pass.

The two Nissan Maximas of Devon Juby and John Craig dropped back from the BMWs in the early stages of the race, but as the grip in their tyres improved, so they started catching the leaders.

However, there were not enough laps left to challenge Taylor and Wyndham for the lead. Craig thus settled for third ahead of Juby who had let his team-mate through. Colin Hastie (Nissan Maxima) finished fifth.

Class A results 1) Anthony Taylor 2) Steve Wyndham 3) John Craig 4) Devon Juby 5) Colin Hastie

In class C, an almighty battle raged for the entire race as five cars swapped position on every lap. An incident was inevitable and it came with two laps to go, but there was a twist to it!

Grant Fletcher (Opel Kadett) was in the lead on the last lap with team-mate Leeroy Poulter right on his tail and giving him a push down the straight. At the same time Grant Wentzel (Honda Ballade) was attempting to pass on the outside of the circuit.

In the excitement, as they got to the end of the back straight, young Poulter (only 17-years-old) braked too late and punted Fletcher off the circuit. Wentzel was caught up in the melee and delayed, as was Dave Kopke (Honda Ballade), who got spun completely around.

Poulter emerged from the confusion in the lead, with Mike Frankle (Honda Ballade) giving chase. Fletcher recovered to run third ahead of Wentzel, Williams and Kopke - a long way back!

With a lap to go, Wentzel passed Fletcher, and then hauled in team-mate Frankle on the last lap to take the win as Poulter slowed dramatically with a cooked engine - the result of a holed radiator from his skirmish with Fletcher.

Frankle took second from Fletcher as Poulter scraped across the line in fourth. Kopke recovered to get past Williams for fifth on the last lap.

Class C results 1) Grant Wentzel 2) Mike Frankle 3) Grant Fletcher 4) Leeroy Poulter 5) Dave Kopke 6) Vaughn Williams 7) Cale Basing

Championship leader, Stephen Taylor's (Opel Kadett), task was made a whole lot easier in class E when chief rival Mark Edwards (Nissan Sentra) clashed with Rui Lima (Nissan Sentra) and Johan Strydom (Opel Kadett) at the first corner. Edwards was out on the spot while Lima and Strydom continued at the back of the field.

Louis Gouws (Opel Kadett), having his first outing of the year, led the first two laps before Taylor passed him and went on to dominate, taking a 5 sec win over the former. Neil Stephen (Nissan Sentra) was a further 8 sec behind in third after narrowly fending off Lima. Strydom recovered to take the final point for sixth. Class E results 1) Stephen Taylor 2) Louis Gouws 3) Neil Stephen 4) Rui Lima 5) Johan Strydom

Race One - classes B, D and F

The Opel Astra's once again showed their dominance with Shaun Watson-Smith lining up in pole position a full second ahead of the third-placed Toyota of Charl Wilken (Toyota Corolla). Sandwiched between the two was Watson-Smith's team-mate, Silvio Scribante.

As the lights turned green the two Opels simply streaked away to go unchallenged to the flag. Watson-Smith took the prearranged win from Scribante by 0,1 sec.

Behind these two, the established order was turned upside down on the first lap when Curt Alchin rolled his Honda Ballade at the subway esses. Steve Corna (Nissan Sentra) emerged best off to run in third place - the position he held to the end of the race.

Wilken fought hard for fourth, finishing narrowly ahead of Leon Mare (Honda Ballade) as Wilhelm Baard (Nissan Sentra), who had missed a gear at the start, came home sixth.

Class B results 1) Shaun Watson-Smith 2) Silvio Scribante 3) Steve Corna 4) Charl Wilken 5) Leon Mare 6) Wilhelm Baard 7) Martin Steyn 8) Anthony Bouilliart 9) Leon Odendaal 10) Hilton Spark

The class D battle was another fraught one with Lawrence Boshoff (Honda Ballade), Phillip Booysen (Honda Ballade) and Chris Boucher (Honda Ballade) having an excellent dice for most the race.

Boshoff eventually took the win from Booysen, who had a very strong run to end second and set fastest lap time of the race. Boucher, who has dominated the class so far this year, had to settle for third with Hector North (Honda Ballade) taking fourth. Phillip Kekana (Honda Ballade) borrowed a car to finish in fifth place.

Class D results 1) Lawrence Boshoff 2) Phillip Booysen 3) Chris Boucher 4) Hector North 5) Phillip Kekana

Clint Weston (Opel Corsa) once again won class F comfortably after his main rivals seemed to fall apart. Mark Cronje (Toyota Tazz) went off at the esses on the first lap, while Michael Benjamin (Toyota Tazz) hit the barrier coming onto the pit straight.

Chilton Korkie (Opel Corsa) finished 8 sec behind in second with Delon Williams (Opel Corsa) a further 4 sec back. The latter set up the fastest lap time after charging through the field after an early spin.

Fraser Mackintosh (Opel Corsa) finished fourth ahead of James Menin (Opel Corsa) to make it an Opel clean sweep of the top five. Fanie de Bruin (Toyota Tazz) was the first of the Toyotas in sixth.

Class F results 1) Clint Weston 2) Chilton Korkie 3) Delon Williams 4) Fraser Mackintosh 5) James Menin 6) Fanie de Bruin 7) Jeanette Kok 8) Mark Cronje 9) Michael Benjamin

Race Two - All classes

Taylor led the 41 car field off the line and once again stayed out front all the way to the flag, as team-mate Wyndham pulled in behind him to ride shot-gun.

Wyndham could only play this role until lap six, however, when his BMW developed tyre problems and started slowing. He could not fend off Craig for long and the Nissan went past on lap six, followed by Juby a lap later and Smith, his car now repaired the next.

Taylor was comfortable out front though, going unchallenged to a 3 sec win from Craig and Juby, and setting a new lap record in the process. Smith had worked his way through the field quite quickly, and was convinced he would have been able to get on terms with the Nissans was it not for Hastie, who punted him off the circuit once he had overtaken the latter.

Smith returned to the circuit and re-passed Hastie for fourth before the end of the race as Wyndham dropped to sixth.

Class A results 1) Anthony Taylor 2) John Craig 3) Devon Juby 4) Robbie Smith 5) Colin Hastie 6) Steve Wyndham

Watson-Smith once again scored an untroubled win in class B, and set a new lap record, closely followed by Scribante. They were 6 sec ahead of Corna who took another fine third place ahead of Mare.

Wilken had run fifth early on, but had an 'off' on lap six dropped him back and also ended Baard's race. Martin Steyn (Toyota Corolla) thus finished fifth ahead of first privateer Anthony Bouilliart in the Nissan Sentra.

Class B results 1) Shaun Watson-Smith 2) Silvio Scribante 3) Steve Corna 4) Leon Mare 5) Martin Steyn 6) Anthony Bouilliart 7) Charl Wilken 8) Leon Odendaal 9) Hilton Spark

The class C fight was again an entertaining and close battle with Frankle taking the honours this time from Kopke, who had to settle for a new lap record.

Going into the last lap Fletcher was third, narrowly ahead of Poulter, whose car had been fitted with a new engine, and Wentzel, but on the run to the line he was balked by slower cars, allowing Poulter to snatch third ahead of Wentzel and Fletcher - only 1,5 sec separated first from fifth.

Class C results 1) Mike Frankle 2) Dave Kopke 3) Leeroy Poulter 4) Grant Wentzel 5) Grant Fletcher 6) Cale Basing

Boshoff once again won class D, but not before a tough battle with his brother-in-law Boucher. It was a battle which only resolved itself towards the end of the race as the former stretched his lead to 4 sec. Boucher held on for second from Booysen, North and Kekana.

Class D results 1) Lawrence Boshoff 2) Chris Boucher 3) Phillip Booysen 4) Hector North 5) Phillip Kekana

In class E Taylor took another easy win, and new lap record in race two, while an excellent drive from Edwards - who had borrowed Gouws's car for the race to keep his championship hopes alive - saw him carved his way through to second. Lima took third ahead of Stephen, who was also the final finisher.

Class E results 1) Stephen Taylor 2) Mark Edwards 3) Rui Lima 4) Neil Stephen

Weston won class F once again, but only after Williams had crashed out on lap six when leading. Williams was narrowly ahead of Weston at that point but, under pressure, he attempted to pass the class E Nissan Sentra of Stephens into the esses.

As they went into the corner side-by-side, the heavier Nissan just leaned on the Corsa, sending the latter spinning into a tyre wall and out the race.

Weston then cruised to a 2 sec win over Korkie, with Menin in third and Mackintosh in fourth. Benjamin was the first Toyota home in fifth followed by the similar car of Cronje.

Class F results 1) Clint Weston 2) Chilton Korkie 3) James Menin 4) Fraser Mackintosh 5) Michael Benjamin 6) Mark Cronje 7) Jeanette Kok 8) Fanie de Bruin

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Series General
Drivers Martin Steyn , Shaun Watson-Smith , Leeroy Poulter
Teams Williams