Graham Heburn on his way to the championship

Pole position in qualifying and two race wins were enough to give Graham Hepburn (Suburban Body Shop Ray) the 2014 Investchem Formula Ford Kent Championship at the final round which was held at Kyalami on 8 November.

Hepburn, who only joined the series at the third round in June, came into the meeting five points behind defending champion Ian Schofield (Investchem Mygale). He set about closing that gap by taking the bonus point for the fastest lap in the morning qualifying session, setting a time over half a second quicker than second place man David Jermy. Championship contenders Schofield and Matthys Strydom (Sage / Suzuki Bramley Talon) filled the second row of the grid with Matt Nash (van Diemen) and Andy Schofield (Investchem Reynard) rounding out the top six.

When the lights went out to signal the start of the first race it didn’t take long for a determined Schofield to get past Jermy and set off after Hepburn. He slowly closed the gap, setting the fastest racing lap of the day and scoring a bonus point in the process, but could not find a way past Hepburn. They crossed the line just six-tenths of a second apart.

Strydom finished a somewhat lonely third place just over five seconds further back with Andy Schofield in fourth. Jonathan Nash brought his Swift home in fifth ahead of Jeff Gable’s van Diemen. Matt Nash crossed the line in seventh but a jump start cost him 30 seconds. This gave seventh place to Jermy – whose car slowed as the race went on – and the final points scoring position to Ben van der Westhuizen (Delta Rubber / Pioneer Plastics Royale).

The first race results left everything to play for in the final race with just three points separating Schofield and Hepburn with Strydom seven points off the lead.

In the second race it was again Hepburn being chased by Schofield at the head of the field until Schofield found a small patch of oil and spun at turn three. This dropped him down the field and left him reliant on an error from Hepburn to secure the championship. The error did come – Hepburn found the same patch of oil – but it did not cost him enough time to lose the lead.

Hepburn took the flag three seconds ahead of Strydom. Jonathan Nash crossed the line just behind Strydom but a thirty second penalty for jumping the start dropped him to eighth place. Nash’s mistake promoted Jeff Gable (Taylon Motorsport van Diemen) to third, his best result of the season. Ian Schofield recovered to finish fourth ahead of son Andy. Matt Nash was less than quarter of a second behind the younger Schofield with Andreas Petrou (Investchem Reynard) in seventh.

Hepburn’s double win gave him the 2014 championship by three points from Ian Schofield with Strydom four points further back in third.