A huge field of Kent-engined Formula Ford cars will line up on the grid at Kyalami on Saturday, 2 December. In addition to being the final round of the 2017 Investchem Formula Ford Kent championship, the event is also a celebration of the 50th anniversary of Formula Ford racing.
The first Formula Ford race took place at Brands Hatch on 2 July 1967 and the combination of great performance and low cost soon saw the formula spread throughout the world, coming to South Africa in 1968. Through the years, many top-level drivers, including Jody Scheckter, South Africa’s only Formula 1 world champion, have used Formula Ford as a stepping stone on their way to greater things.
While many of the drivers on the grid at Kyalami will be there purely to celebrate 50 years of Formula Ford, there is a serious part to the day’s events as well. Dean Venter (Desco SA / Manitou Swift) needs just a single point to wrest the championship away from Andrew Horne (Xena Chemicals / Budd Power Van Diemen). Stablemates Jeff Gable (Jacquet Racing Van Diemen) and David Jermy (Lime Chilli Consulting Van Diemen) are in a battle for third with Jonathan Nash (Turnfab Engineering Swift) within striking distance.
Duncan Vos (WCT Engineering Van Diemen), Allen Meyer (Van Diemen), Alex Vos (Ecurie Zoo Swift), former champion Graham Hepburn (Suburban Body Shop Van Diemen) and James Reeves (Ray) will be fighting it out in the lower half of the championship top ten.
Drivers making an appearance who are not normally part of the Investchem Formula Ford Kent championship include Basil Mann (Royale), who won four South African Formula Ford titles in the mid-to-late eighties, former British Formula Ford champion and regular visitor to South African circuits, Rick Morris (Investchem Van Diemen) and a number of competitors who normally compete in the South African Investchem Formula 1600 championship.
Friday will be dedicated to practices sessions before the serious business gets underway on Saturday morning when qualifying starts at 08h35. The opening 8-lap race is scheduled to begin at 11h30 with the lights set to go out to signal the start of race two at 15h30.