FORMULA 1

F1 Malaysia day one wrap

With the first two practice sessions out of the way for the Malaysian Grand Prix, we take a look at what happened
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Paarl Boys Golf the Flamingo

9 Feb 2009

Cape gymkhana season gets under way in fine style at Glomix Flamingos blast
Paarl team Jehan de Jongh and Johan Swart claimed all the attention in the Way2Go Promotions / GK Engineering class C VW Golf MkI 1600 when they won the 4th Glomix Bricks and Blocks Hopefield Gymkhana at the popular Flamingo’s Restaurant and Dance Club Langebaan venue on the Cape West Coast in dominant fashion.

Not satisfied with taking their first overall victory in fine style their final attempt at setting the fastest time of the day saw them making gymkhana history when Jehan missed the apex, clipping a tractor tyre, parking the Golf on it’s roof. Sharing the car with his extremely competitive brother-in-law, Danye Louw, it certainly made sure he could not be beaten on the day!

This combination have always been considered serious contenders in the wet but their sudden turn of pace on dry tarmac simply caught everybody by surprise. Thankfully Danye and Marcile Louw (Moorreesburg) posted a good enough time on their second attempt to seal a family one-two. Izak van Zyl (Brackenfell) the only outsider to actually remain in contention with the flying de Jongh / Louw combination in his Dynotech class G turbocharged VW Golf GTi 2.0. Ironically Izak is responsible for dyno testing most of the gymkhana cars and he has Jehan de Jongh (Paarl) as navigator.

In recent years Izak have taken over the Mr 2nd place mantle from André Dreyer but this performance showed that the Dynotech team could well reach that goal this year. Duncan Jepthas (Kuilsrivier) and Nashrene Schloss (Wetton) started off with a conservative approach in the Barnett’s turbo and supercharged class G VW Golf GTi 2.0 but simply could not match the leading trio and settled for fourth place overall. The 2008 overall gymkhana champions, André Dreyer (Vredenburg) and Patrick Vermaak (Kuilsrivier), found themselves truly beaten into fifth overall for the day in the Weskaap Bakwerke class A VW Golf GTi 2.0 16v.

Another impressive performance saw Jacques Otto (Kraaifontein) and Emile Blanché (Kraaifontein) in sixth overall with their very rapid (white)Toyota 1600 powered Nissan LDV. A truly remarkable performance for a small capacity rear wheel drive vehicle. Danye and Marcile Louw (Moorreesburg) seventh in their blue H&H Wellington class B VW Golf MkI 1800 despite some concerns about flailing oil pressure.

Morné Roux (Durbanville) had Monica Robbertse (Durbanville) as navigator in the ex-Fanie du Toit class A Mazda 323 EGi 2.0 16v and eighth overall certainly only serves as development training at this stage. Definitely a team to keep an eye on in future. Danie Smuts (Wolseley) and Louise Kellerman (Wolseley) placed the class E winning Aquality Plumbing BMW 325i ninth after another consistent day at the office. Making it three rwd cars in the top ten the neatly prepared (red) Toyota 1600 powered Innovative Woodwork Nissan LDV of Anton Smit (Van Rhynsdorp) and Emile Blanché (Kraaifontein) set some impressive times despite being some 30kW down on the white LDV and running 13” wheels.

Günther and Louise Appelgryn (Durbanville) showed that they too are serious about the 2009 season by claiming an excellent eleventh overall in their class B VW Golf MkI 1800. Johann and Petra Zulch (Ceres) seriously challenged Danie Smuts for class E honours but a mistake saw the Van der Merwe Houtsaery class E BMW 325i in twelfth place. The ever consistent blue class B VW Golf MkI 1800 of Morné Roux and Monica Robbertse (Durbanville) thirteenth with the top lady driver, Nashrene Schloss (Wetton), claiming fourteenth slot with Riaz Noordien as navigator in the Speed and Sound class B Toyota Corolla Sprinter 1800.

Battling a multitude of niggling problems the Indy Oil / Weskaap Bakwerke class A VW Golf MkI 2.0 of Brennon Green (Vredenburg) and Wilbert Theron (Vredenburg) finished third in class and fifteenth overall but given a clean run this combination could well become serious challengers and they intend fitting in as many events as possible during 2009. Brennon also enjoyed treating himself and the spectators to a expensive Khumo smoking display of raw power behind the wheel of a very exotic twin turbo V6 Ford powered N400 Noble supercar. Good news being that we might see this car return as an official entry in the future!

Nashrene Schloss (Wetton) and Louise Appelgryn (Wolseley) dominated the all ladies category in the Speed and Sound Toyota Corolla Sprinter Twin Cam 1800, finishing sixteenth overall to really annoy their male counterparts. Kobus Wilson (Worcester) and Jean-Pierre Robberts (Worcester) defended Boland honours with seventeenth in their very rapid blue Nissan 1400 powered Nissan LDV. Another combination showing great potential in these never-say-die “bakkies”. Pierre and Róaan Schoeman (Strand) returned in their white Strand Fitment Centre class B VW Golf MkI 1800 and finished eighteenth overall.

Nineteenth and winners of class D it was Jehan de Jongh (Paarl) and Johan Swart (Paarl) sharing the Boland Trade Centre VW Golf MkI 1300 of Danye Louw. Jehan taking overall and class C honours and rolls the car to stop Danye Louw from challenging this position and then he wins class D in a car that was totally rebuilt by Danye? Attie (Langebaan) and Koos Groenewald (Langebaan Road) celebrated their return to the sport with a well deserved second place in class D in their VW Golf MkI 1300. They campaigned the Pearley’s Opel Kadett 140i for many years.

Róaan and Pierre Schoeman (Strand) 21st in their second Strand Fitment Centre class B VW Golf MkI 1800 and this result certainly proves that Róaan might soon become a serious threat to Pierre as far as overall positions are concerned. Always great to see new combinations making progress and this event certainly highlighted vast improvements in many camps. Lindsey Carlse (Edgemead) and Edward Kruger (Ottery) opened their account conservatively in their neat Reynolds class A VW Golf MkI GTi 2.0 whilst Martin Esterhuyse Jnr (Brackenfell) and Francois Erasmus (Brackenfell) enjoyed better reliability in their Automotive Solutions class C Honda Ballade in 23rd spot.

Still not satisfied Jehan de Jongh (Paarl) and Marcile Louw (Moorreesburg) also contested class F in the Ford Escort MkII 1600 of Herman Louw (Velddrif), finishing 24th without mishap. Pierre Schoeman (Strand) and Morné Roux (Durbanville) also drove the yellow Strand Fitment Centre class B VW Golf MkI 1800 to good effect in 25th spot. Richard “Tazmanian Devil” Hough (Ceres) and Danie Smuts (Wolseley) enjoyed an entertaining day in the no 69 BMW 320i whilst more was expected from Gary Meyer and Morné Roux in the green “padpuisie” S.U.P.Auto class D Opel Corsa 130.

Jaco Matthee (Brackenfell) and Philip Swart (Villiersdorp) shared a almost vintage 1981 class F Toyota Corolla 1600 rwd and the little car responded to the challenge with some entertaining tailslides. Charl Carr (Saldanha) and Jaco Matthee (Brackenfell) continues to make progress in the neat silver class D Opel Corsa 130 and it’s just a matter of time before they finish on the podium in this very competitive class. Danye and Marcile Louw (Moorreesburg) next in line with the Boland Trade Centre class D VW Golf MkI 1300.

Still exhausted from having prepared all the Ouens Racing cars he now faces the rebuilt of the class C car and still manages to make it sound like fun!
Danye Louw (Mooreesburg) also enjoyed an outing with his father Herman Louw (Velddrif) in the entertaining class F Ford Escort 1600 clubman racer.

We simply refuse to even mention the fact that commentator Pieter “Swannie” Swanepoel actually also professes to owning a similar Ford Escort. Of course his does not leak oil and is 100% reliable because he never actually risks starting it! Watch this class in 2009. Walter van Dyk (Ceres) and Jacques du Plessis found their No 3 starting position intimidating and took things rather easy to come home in 32nd spot with their neatly prepared class G turbocharged VW Golf MkI 2.0 16v.

Morné Olivier (Wolseley) and Richard “Tazz” Hough (Ceres) smoked the class A Opel Kadett GSi 2.0 16v to 33rd place, something that was very popular with the spectators and the white Opel simply kept on returning for more. Jacques du Plessis (Ceres) and Walter van Dyk (Ceres) made their debut in the ex-Jacques Otto class C Toyota Conquest RSi 1600 and though very fast the team will require some time to truly master this machine. They will be a serious factor before long but will need to shake the rwd habits! Francois Erasmus (Brackenfell) and Martin Esterhuyse Jnr (Brackenfell) 35th in the neat red class B VW Golf MkI 1800.

Best novice team present on the day went to Ruan Reynders (Parow) and Herman Matthee (Bellville) in their very neat 1980 class F Ford Escort MkII 2.0 16v. A very neatly prepared car and it certainly had Pieter Swanepoel very excited. Marcel Grovers (Saldanha) and Lawton van Oordt (Saldanha) enjoyed a slow start to their year in the Drafthire class B VW Golf GTi 1800 whilst Johan Swart (Paarl) and Jehan de Jongh (Paarl) survived a few interesting moments enroute to 38th spot in the H&H Wellington VW Golf MkI 1800.

Father and daughter combination, Jacobus and Lizelle Smit (Strand), returned for more tyre smoking action in their neat KS Panelbeating class E BMW 325i.
Robin Wakeford (Brackenfell) and Jaco Matthee (Brackenfell) took things rather cautiously in their class C Toyota Corolla 1600 but are saving their best for the next event on 21 February 2009 at the Pick and Pay Hypermarket.

Jean-Pierre Roberts (Worcester) and Kobus Wilson (Worcester) traded sides in the rapid blue Nissan LDV 1400 and it was clear that JP was not driving his own car. Louise Kellerman (Wolseley) and Marcile Louw (Moorreesburg) the only other all ladies entry in the Aquality Plumbing BMW 325i of Danie Smuts. Bart Smit Snr (Brackenfell) and Bart Smit Jnr (Brackenfell) returned to gymkhana action in their standard Nissan LDV 1400 and put in some consistent runs.

Beyers du Toit (Bellville) and Tieneke Brosens (Bellville) made their competitive debut in a neat Ecotech class A VW Jetta 2.0 whilst debutant driver, Ettiene Swart (Brackenfell), had the experience of Izak van Zyl (Brackenfell) to depend on in his class G Opel Corsa LDV 1.7 TDi. Edward Kruger (Ottery) and Lindsey Carlse (Edgemead) another welcome addition to class D in a stille to be sorted VW Golf MkI 1300. Lawton van Oordt (Saldanha) and Christopher Peters (Saldanha) another team off to a slow start in the Drafthire class B VW Golf GTi 1800.

Benjamin Dixon (Citrusdal) and Gerald Hoenderdos (Durbanville) made their first appearance beyond Vredendal in their very neat Toyota Conquest RSi 1600. A young driver with clear intentions to develop his talents in 2009. Philip Swart (Villiersdorp) and Jaco Matthee (Brackenfell) swopped sides in the 1981 Toyota Corolla 1600 and enjoyed themselves in the tail happy car. Christopher Peters (Saldanha) and Nivan van Oordt (Saldanha) challenged for most spectacular driver of the day honours in their Drafthire class E BMW 325i but were pipped to the award by the class F BMW 320i of Andrew Pojie (Parow) and Tasneem Parker (Parow).

Dee-Jay Booysen dominated the single seater category in his Dico Honda 400cc Formula M racer, posting a stunning 48.58sec fastest time of the day. Much too his own surprise Izak van Zyl came home second in his Dynotech Golf with Duncan Jepthas third fastest in the Barnett’s Golf. Not even the absence of his rather large navigator could allow André Dreyer onto the podium and he had to settle for fourth in the Weskaap Bakwerke Golf.

Ryno Pentz simply could not get his fourstroke Dico Formula M on the same pace and settled for fifth place with Brennon Green and the temperamental Weskaap Bakwerke Golf sixth. Günther Appelgryn added seventh in his MkI 1800 Golf and was followed home by the tyre smoking Opel GSi of Morné Olivier, the rapid Conquest RSi of Jacques du Plessis and the KS Panelbeating BMW 325i of Jacobus Smit.

Patrick Vermaak became a firm favourite for the Boo-Boo of the Day award when he managed to forget the brain of the Jayen Timer at home and only discovered the eror when Neville Gleeson prepared the system for the start. Dewald Nortjé earning the Marshal of the Day award by fetching the critical piece of equipment whilst everyone present enjoyed a practice run using old fashioned stopwatches.

Fortunately Jehan de Jongh felt greedy and proceeded to become the first ever driver to roll a car on a gymkhana, claiming the dreaded G-string reward. DVD videographer, Danie Burger, and photographer, Leatitia Bester, both managed to get the start of the infamous roll but opted to bail out before the car actually finished the maneuver. They just do not make photographers the way they used to!

Pastor Deon Maartens opened proceedings with scripture reading and prayer. A really brisk south easter tested the endurance of every gazebo and even individual, possibly the only complaint on the day! A fitting start to the 2009 season and rumours persist that more new venues are vying for a slot in the ten event schedule.

As always Scrutineering was done by Marius Roux with Xandré du Toit as Senior Judge of Fact (Pieter du Toit and trainee, Francois Lourens assisting). Start and Finish saw Dewald and Meghan Nortjé return to duty whilst the Medical Standby Crew was provided by Milmed. Clerk of the Course, Pierre van der Westhuizen, and MSA Steward, Brian Roy, signed the results almost before the last car reached the pits thanks to the superb system managed by André Mitchell and Neville Gleeson. Prizegiving was a festive occasion made even better by Richelieu and if anything has to be considered negative it would be the roasting every face endured in the pumping South Easter during the day. Race control protected by the well known blue Forsdicks gazebo.
    
Some noticeable absentees included the only professional navigator in the sport, Liezel Roux. The class F Ford Escort 2.0 of Keith Dorrell also did not make round one whilst Pieter Hugo and Nicole van der Westhuizen are planning a return to rear wheel drive in the near future. Hopefully most of these regulars will be back in action come 21 February 2009 when the Gymkhana series returns to the popular Pick & Pay Hypermarket in Brackenfell where we will be announcing the return of another well known entity as title sponsor of the event.

A rally practice was run at Nuwedam on the same day and those in the know consider the performance of Martin Esterhuyse Snr and Paul van Greunen in th ex-Les Faasen class A7 Nissan Sentra STi 2.0 something of a revelation. Leon Esterhuyse is said to be modifying his Bantam into a rally spec vehicle whilst Dan Esterhuyse is looking at acquiring the BMW 328i that Anton Smit wanted to enter into rallying. Shaun Jones reckons that the 4x4 Synchro will finally prove reliable and fast whilst Gavin Grierson found a change of cylinder head something of a challenge in the 2.8 Skyline.

The original Wiel Nissan Skyline 2.8 GTX of Ockie Keyser finally turned a wheel again and hopefully the 1998 class S4 champion will be making a return to the sport in 2009.
= Patrick Vermaak


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