David Jermy

David Jermy
Photographer – Meghan McCabe

Graham Hepburn (Suburban Body Shop Ray) and David Jermy shared the heat wins at the sixth round of the 2014 Investchem Formula Ford Kent Championship which took place under grey skies at Zwartkops on 11 October.

Hepburn set the quickest time in the morning’s qualifying session, taking pole position by almost three-tenths of a second from Andrew Schofield (Investchem Reynard). Jermy set the next quickest time, just a thousandth of a second slower than Schofield, but his car was found to be underweight at the post-session check and he was relegated to the back of the grid. This promoted Matthys Strydom (Sage / Suzuki Bramley Talon) to third with championship leader Ian Schofield alongside him on the second row of the grid. Andrew Horne, making his first appearance of the season in his Xena Chemicals / Investchem Royale, headed up the third row of the grid with Matt Nash (van Diemen) completing the top six.

It wasn’t long before the red flag came out in the first race after Ben van der Westhuizen (Delta Rubber / Pioneer Plastics Royale) and Jeff Gable (Van Diemen) came together in turn 1 putting both of them out for the day. Oil on the track from one of the cars that took avoiding action delayed the re-start.

When the race got underway again Jermy was the man on the move coming from the back of the grid though to third at the flag, although his progress was not without incident. Coming into the final corner at the end of the seventh lap an overenthusiastic overtaking manoeuvre resulted in contact with Ian Schofield, putting the championship leader into a spin. Jermy continued but Schofield dropped down the field. At the front the battle was between Hepburn and Strydom with Hepburn hanging on to win by just six tenths of a second. Behind Jermy, Andrew Schofield, Matt Nash and Horne were involved in a race-long fight which ended in that order. Ian Schofield recovered to finish in seventh and salvage a couple of championship points with Rex Tweedie (Ecurie Zoo Swift) rounding out the top eight.

In the second race Jermy grabbed the lead and slowly extended it, taking the flag just over a second ahead of the rest. Behind him a three way battle developed between Horne, Ian Schofield and Strydom. Horne and Schofield slowly pulled away from Strydom with Strydom eventually dropping to fifth after a spin exiting turn four. Schofield and Horne continued their fight with Schofield getting through to second at the top of the hill on the final lap.

Strydom’s spin allowed Matt Nash through to fourth with Hepburn in sixth. Jonathan Nash (Swift) and Steve Crook (van Diemen) rounded out the top eight.

The day’s results have now made the fight for the championship a three-way battle between Ian Schofield, Matthys Strydom and Graham Hepburn. Just five points separate the trio with Schofield in front four points ahead of Strydom and Hepburn a further point back.

The 2014 Investchem Formula Ford Kent Championship will be decided at the final round at Kyalami on 8 November.