Mandela Bay 500 Raceday preview

Mandela Bay 500 Raceday preview

13.03.2020: Mandela Bay 500 Raceday Preview Aldo Scribante Racetrack, Port Elizabeth Port Elizabeth race fans can look forward to supporting their local heroes driving the most exciting supercars ever to visit the Aldo Scribante at the Mandela Bay 500

 Mandela Bay 500 Raceday Preview
 Aldo Scribante Racetrack, Port Elizabeth

Port Elizabeth race fans can look forward to supporting their local heroes driving the most exciting supercars ever to visit the Aldo Scribante at the Mandela Bay 500 on Saturday 21 March. The South African Endurance Series season opener will deliver racing of the highest order when it kicks off a bumper PE national championship racing year alongside the best in local car races in a raceday to remember.

It could very well be a record breaking day too, with the all-time Scribante lap record in danger from Craig Jarvis and Steve Humble’s monstrous Corvette-powered Maui Motorhomes Ginetta G57. Among the fastest cars racing in South Africa today, the Cape-based machine has tended to be brittle, so it will once again be a matter of cat and mouse at Aldo. Or is that tortoise and hare…?

One man who knows all too well that you must first finish before you finish first, reigning and multiple SA Endurance champion Nick Adcock and Michael Jensen and their AidCall247 with Rico Barlow Racing Ligier JS53 Evo are always worthy of a punt, while Franco and Silvio Scribante’s double-Hyabusa Chevron B26 not only carries huge home interest, but is also a top contender for the win.

The racing sportscars also have a crack field of SA GT3 supercars to keep them busy and there’s a fair share of local interest among that line-up too as PE’s own multiple South African racing champion Michael Stephen joins Paul Hill in his spectacular Kalex Aston Martin Vantage GT3  and another home-grown hero Chassen Bright gives chase alongside Bradley van Zummeren and Stuart White in a Stradale McLaren MP4-12C GT3.

They will have their work cut out by returning former SAEC GT champions, Cape Town father and son team Marcel and Dayne Angel and their AutoHaus Angel Ferrari 458 GT3 and never ignore the likes of Porsche 911 GT3 Cup duo Nicky Dicks and Roy Obery, while Mr. Consistency Harry Arangies and his Stradale Ferrari 360 Challenge is always a worthy SAEC contender.

Other sportscar entries to keep an eye on include Ligier trio Riaan Bothma and James Forbes (Auto Investment JS51), Romano Sartori and Franco di Matteo AMC JS49) and Trevor and Shannon Frost (Strocam Mining JS49), while smaller class cars include Eric Salomon and Dave Sinclair (Lessons Elf S06), Andrew Horne and Gerald Buys (Xena Nash MVW3) and Dean Wolson, Philip Meyer and Gerald Wright (Wright S2000).

One man SA Endurance racing owes a dept of gratitude to legend himself Tony Martin, who not only runs a pair of Class F factory Ford Coyote V8 Backdraft Roadsters for himself and Mike Mcloughlin and fellow Durbanites Brian Martin and Trevor Graham, but the former SA Drivers Champion and Daytona 24-hour winner has handed out ten identical Cobra-like Lexus V8 Backdraft Roadsters to teams to race the season in Class G.

They include former WP GTi C champion Bryan Morgan and Donovan Taylor (Wright), local star Dino Scribante and Mark Owens, lady racer Clare Vale and Wade von Zimmerman, veterans Colin Ellison and Peter Jenkins (Medusa), Barend and Harm Pretorius (Pesty), Steve and Devon Clark, Gary and Nigel Richardson and Pierre-Richard Potgieter.

Add Zane Pearce and Brad Funnel, Graham and Jean du Toit (Dream Ahead) and international duo Rudi Patoir and Henry Smith. The Mandela Bay 500 entry is rounded off by a fleet of tin-top racers including local Volkswagen crews Gordon Nolan and Kean Barnard (GN Coatings Vivo), Daniel Bright and Tom Hugo (Brights Golf) and Jozi duo, racing lass Karah Hill and Trevor Bland (Kalex Polo).

The endurance race will be preceded by a few EP regional car races headed by the ever spectacular EP Modified Saloons, where Scribante  brothers Silvio and Aldo will be back in action in their all-wheel drive Scribante Concrete Audi S4 quattros to take on winner last time out, Nick Davidson’s similar Hella Audi and a new threat in Gordon Nicholson’s ever-quicker Brights Motorsport/Fuchs Skyline GTR.

Other Class A runners include Duncan Lethbridge in his St. Francis Marine Audi TT and two rather alternate threats in Deon Slabbert’s wieldy Emerald Fire VW Polo Turbo and Rudolf de Vos who will no doubt be an overall Modified contender having escaped the Historic racing paddock in his magnificent ‘Little Chev' Can Am V8.

Expect the usual class battles between the likes of Steve High’s S&K/Brights/Fuchs Chev Cruze, Thys Geyser (GDC Golf), Gordon Nolan (GB/HR Focus Polo), champion Stephan Aucamp (Injection Technik/A1 BMW) Steven Phillips (Golf), Caryn van Wyk (Nissan 350Z), Divan Weitz (Civic), Ashwin Harri (Astra), Kelsey Davidson (Davidson & Sons Polo) and Fanie Aucamp (Jetta).

There will be EP Historics races too with Rudolf de Vos the man to beat in his Can Am, which Dinesh Coopoo (Concept Wheels BMW 2002ti) Tom Flynn (Datsun 120Y) Mark Schulpfort (Goodwrench Alfa), Neil van Eyk (Lokhose Escort) and Robert Halgreen (Rob2Go/Le Mans Escort), among the  men do their best to dbeat. The PE Street Car handicap always entertain with Pat Fourie (Wide Horizon Maxima), Andrew Boshoff (Golf) and the rest out to thrill on Saturday too.

So there are more than 500 very good reasons to cross Saturday 21 March off your calendar and head to Aldo Scribante for another great day’s racing. There is of course much more happening around the racetrack too, with loads of food trucks, a bar in the tower, clean loos and plenty space for the entire family. So bring your braai, cooler boxes, deck chairs, the family and as many friends as possible too — access Aldo Scribante off Kyalami Road, Coega — that’s just off the N2 on the R335 — tickets are on sale at the gate at R50 per person.

 Aldo Scribante Racetrack also photo


13.03.2020 / MaP

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