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Trofeo Challenge and Midvaal Historics

The (formerly Alfa ) and Midvaal Historic categories joined forces at the on Saturday 5 March for the first round of the renewed and refreshed 2016 Inland Championship. An impressive 26 car field lined up on the grid for the first race of the day.

Race 1

Shawn Smidt (Datsun 160Y) took a demanding lead from the first lap

Shawn Smidt (Datsun 160Y) took a demanding lead from the first lap

Pole man Shawn Smidt (Datsun 160Y) took an immediate lead ahead of Brendon Parker (Datsun GX Coupe) with Jacques Mostert (Datsun GX Coupe) and Peder Jensen (Datsun Sedan). John Hendriks (Alfa Sud), the first of the Trofeo Challenge competitors slotted into fifth position ahead of Shaun Lamprecht (Alfa 33), Anton Vos (Datsun 1200 GX) and Warren Ewart (Alfa GTV6).

Ewart was scything his way through the pack and was up to fourth position by the second lap. Lamprecht’s challenge was cut short when he pulled into the pits on the same lap. Sean Fandam (Fiat 124 Sport Coupe) didn’t last much longer either when he pulled into the pits a lap later as well. Johan van den Heever (Mini 1000) then retired down the back straight on lap four as well.

Smidt was still leading ahead of Parker at the half way stage of the race. Ewart had moved into third position ahead of Mostert with Jensen still trying to stay with them in fifth. Francois Jacobs (Datsun 1200) was playing catch up and passed Hendriks on lap five. Paddy Venske (Toyota Corona) was also on a late charge as he relegated Hendriks by another position to claim eighth position

Smidt held on for a comfortable win ahead of Parker and Ewart.


Top 10 Race 1

Ewart (Alfa GTV6) had to work hard to clinch a 3rd place

Ewart (Alfa GTV6) had to work hard to clinch a 3rd place

  1. Shawn Smidt (MH/D) – Best lap: 1:15.481
  2. Brendan Parker (MH/E) – Best lap: 1:15.578
  3. Warren Ewart (TC) – Best lap: 1:16.694
  4. Jacques Mostert (MH/F) – Best lap: 1:19.050
  5. Anton Vos (MH/F) – Best lap: 1:20.232
  6. Francois Jacobs (MH/F) – Best lap: 1:17.086
  7. Peder Jensen (MH/H) – Best lap: 1:20.549
  8. Paddy Venske (MH/H) – Best lap: 1:21.876
  9. John Hendriks (TC) – Best lap: 1:22.071
  10. Travis Jensen (MH/H) – Best lap: 1:23.901

Race 2

John Hendriks (Alfa Sud) was the top Trofeo Challenge driver on the day

John Hendriks (Alfa Sud) was the top Trofeo Challenge driver on the day

The second race of the day would pick up where the first race left off. Schmidt once again grabbed the lead ahead of Parker and Mostert. Jensen slotted into fourth position with Venske and Hendriks in tow. After retiring from the first race on the warm up lap, a repaired Juan Gerber (Toyota Celica) was scything his way through the field from the back of the grid.

He was up to fourth position by lap three when he dived up the inside of Jensen through turn eight. Lamprecht was also trying to fight back after suffering a DNF in the first race. He passed Ralph Kernes (Alfa Alfetta) to claim eighth position on lap five. Gerber continued his charge as he passed Mostert to claim third position. Venske was clearly inspired as he then challenged Jensen for fifth position with the pair running side by side through turn four. He made the move stick and claimed the position with only a lap to go.

Smidt was in fine form as he romped home to a convincing victory ahead of Parker and Gerber.

Top 10 Race 2

Juan Gerber (Toyota Celica) had a great comeback in race two

Juan Gerber (Toyota Celica) had a great comeback in race two

  1. Shawn Smidt (MH/D) – Best lap: 1:14.023
  2. Brendan Parker (MH/E) – Best lap: 1:15.601
  3. Juan Gerber (MH/E) – Best lap: 1:16.848
  4. Jacques Mostert (MH/F) – Best lap: 1:19.250
  5. Paddy Venske (MH/H) – Best lap: 1:20.938
  6. Peder Jensen (MH/H) – Best lap: 1:21.589
  7. John Hendriks (TC) – Best lap: 1:21.849
  8. Shaun Lamprecht (TC) – Best lap: 1:20.745
  9. Ralph Kernes (TC) – Best lap: 1:23.585
  10. Johan Swanepoel (TC & MH) – Best lap: 1:25.506

The next round will be at the Phakisa Freeway outside Welkom in the Free State on 2 April 2016.

For live updates on race days follow the series on Facebook: Facebook.com/InlandChampionship

For any enquiries, photographs or media reports on the Trofeo Challenge feel free to contact Paul Blackburn on 082 900 6443 or media@racepics.co.za.

Trofeo Challenge wishes to thank their valuable sponsors

Trofeo Challenge wishes to thank their valuable sponsors

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