Holm Extends Championship Lead at Kyalami The second Pro Tour event of the year, saw reigning South African National Formula Vee Champion Alan Holm (Lasersprint Rhema 2), extend his lead in the battle for the 2007 title, picking up...
Holm Extends Championship Lead at Kyalami
The second Pro Tour event of the year, saw reigning South African National Formula Vee Champion Alan Holm (Lasersprint Rhema 2), extend his lead in the battle for the 2007 title, picking up maximum points, with two victories and the fastest lap of the race. It was however no walk in the park and although Symm Grobler (Auto Mecca Rhema 2) and Dennis Johns (Geyser Attorneys Rhema 2) where about a half a second off the pace, at Kyalami, Peter Hills (Vacuform Rhema 2) and Anthony Taylor (Rigidek Rhema 2) made Holm work extremely hard for his victories. Taylor had in fact, only entered for the event the previous evening but proved that he has lost none of the talent, which saw him take back to back Formula Vee Championships in 1997 and 1998. Having last raced in a National Championship race, in May 2006, he stepped back into the car for qualifying and secured the third quickest time of the session, behind Hills and Holm. For John Lerm (Racing for Wildlife Sting), it was to be a short day, as he hit a patch of water and went straight on into the tyre barrier, to bring out the red flag shortly before the end of the qualifying session.
At the start of the first heat, it was however Holm who took the lead, from Hills, Taylor, Grobler, Jaco Schriks (Lasersprint Rhema 2), Trevor Bland (Rhema 2) , Johns and Kyle Bennett (AIE Plastics Rhema 1). Having experienced an overheating problem, in qualifying, Johns was soon carving his way up from eight place, leaving Bland and Bennett to engage in their own private race long battle, with plenty of other duels and multi car battles raging all the way down the field, as well. In trouble early on, was newcomer Charles Roets (Sting) and he retired after three laps, while other retirements, came from, Hugo Wallendorf (Rhema 1) and Jannie Geyser (Geyser Attorneys Vision) who had worked his way up from the back of the grid, to sixteenth place, by the time he retired. Kevin Cartmell (Rand Brake Sting) was misfiring badly and dropping back all the time and then on the last lap, Nico Blignaut (Gilus IT SAP Rhema 1) stopped out on the circuit and had to be towed in, after the race
Out front Holm still led and although Taylor passed Hills and briefly held on to second place, Hills was having none of that and soon retook the position. At the flag, Holm won the heat, 1.237 seconds ahead of Hills, with Taylor 0.340 of a second further back and they where followed home, by Grobler, Johns, Schricks, Bland, Bennett, sixteen year old development driver Courtney Steenveld (NLDTF Rhema 1), Bradley Martin (Rhema 2) and Johan Gouws (Computer Assembly Mantis).
The second heat, was another Holm benefit, although this time Hills did lead him across the line on a couple of occasions, during the course of the race. During the hectic first lap, Steenveld lost his nose cone and as Bland and Bennett resumed, what seems to be becoming a never ending battle, between the two of them, Bland lost his nose cone, plus a few seconds as well, after a coming together with Bennett. Martin had retired early in the race, with a gearbox problem and Cartmell had failed to complete the first lap but everyone else pressed on in the gathering gloom, with the sun having already set, before the start of the race.
Having set the fastest lap of the race, to retake the lead from Hills, Holm then hung on, to take his second victory of the day, 0.427 of a second ahead of Hills, with Taylor another 0.486 of a second behind and they where followed across the line, by Johns, Grobler, Bennett, Schriks, Bland, Ben Pienaar (BJ Pro Welding Rhema 1), Steenveld, Durban's Zaahir Essa and Gouws, the two of them racing for the line side by side, recording exactly the same race time and a difference of 0.000 of a second!