Welkom, round eight race notes

Morne Jurgens wrapped up his second South African Formula Ford Championship in succession in round eight of the Vodacom Power Tour at the Phakisa Circuit near Welkom yesterday. Jurgens (The Truck Den Mygale), from Gauteng, retained his title...

Morne Jurgens wrapped up his second South African Formula Ford Championship in succession in round eight of the Vodacom Power Tour at the Phakisa Circuit near Welkom yesterday.

Jurgens (The Truck Den Mygale), from Gauteng, retained his title in emphatic style by taking pole position, winning both races and setting the fastest lap of the race. With two rounds to go, he now has an unassailable lead in the championship.

It was a disappointing day for his title rival Michael Atkins (Xumbug Mygale), the latter crashing out of both races. In race one Atkins crashed out all on his own on the first lap, while in the second he was dicing for third place when he was involved in a three-car clash on the sixth lap of ten eliminating him from the race.

Behind Jurgens, Garth Waberski (Dache Imports Mygale) proved to be the best of the rest. He qualified second for both races and finished second in both. Although never too far behind Jurgens, he was not in a position to challenge for the lead and all he could do was keep close and hope for a mistake from the champion. He has now moved into third in the championship.

The action of the races was in the battle for third place. In the first it raged between Robert Wolk (InvestChem/AfintaPart Mygale), Marco dos Santos (Mygale), Marco da Cunha (DCM Line Boring Van Diemen) and Paolo da Cunha (DCM Line Boring Van Diemen) for most of the event.

Unfortunately for Dos Santos, having his first race in Zetec Formula Ford, and Wolk, it all came to an end on the last lap when both suffered gearbox problems. The former's car jammed in second gear, while Wolk suffered a broken gear lever.

That left Marco da Cunha to finish third after his brother had also retired on the last lap with mechanical problems.

In race two, Wolk, Atkins, Dos Santos and the Da Cunha brothers were in the thick of the battle for third, but it all came to an end on lap six when Atkins, Dos Santos and Wolk ran three abreast into a corner. It did not work and Dos Santos and Atkins were out on the spot, while Wolk managed to continue to finish third. Marco Da Cunha held on for fourth, while brother Paolo had been forced to pit and finished a lap down.

The Ray Ban driver of the day went to Leslie Reynolds (AirNet Travel Mygale) who finished in an excellent fifth place in both races on his debut in the series.

MORNE JURGENS -- 1st Overall: "I am extremely happy to have clinched the championship today. Everything went perfectly all weekend and it's a credit to my team that we have had such a good weekend. With the title race all over now, I can enjoy the last two races of the season and just have fun."

WABERSKI -- 2nd Overall: "Overall it was a good weekend for us. Obviously, I would have liked to have won, but I am glad that we were consistent all weekend. It's the first time this year that we have been consistent. In both races Morne put in very good first laps to build a gap. After that our lap times were similar but I just could not close the gap. It's nice to be third in the championship now, but its close and will be a tough fight to the end."

MARCO DA CUNHA -- 3rd Overall: "It was nice to be back after missing the last round. We had a great scrap in both races which was good fun. It went better today and I hope we can build on that in the final two races."

<pre> Championship points after round 8: 1) Morne Jurgens 140 2) Michael Atkins 92 3) Garth Waberski 66 4) Marco da Cunha 63 5) Robert Wolk 48 6) Martin Robinson 40

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