The 2018 Investchem Formula 1600 championship, which paves its champion’s Road to Indy, heads to the classic East London Grand Prix Circuit for its fourth round on Workers Saturday 16 June with a tight championship tussle developing at the head of this year’s title race. And with the winner earning a trip to the annual Road to Indy Shootout in the US in December, the chips are down with last race winner Nicolas van Weely now just four points behind early runaway championship leader Stuart White and Alex Gillespie a further six points adrift.
Liam Pienaar meanwhile leads a three-way fight for fourth in the championship race with Andrew Schofield and O’Connor and the three of them split by just six points. Both White and O’Connor however missed the previous race as they raced overseas, but all the title protagonists will now rejoin battle in East London, so expect a weekend of no-holds-barred racing down in the Border region.
The grudge match this weekend has to be between Bloemfontein’s championship leader Stuart White and his Fantastic Racing Mygale following that dominant four race winning rout; and Linden lad Nicholas Van Weely’s Magnificent Paints van Diemen following his double win last time out. White is also riding the crest of the wave following his recent French Formula 4 victory at Spa, so those two both have something to prove.
Add a few drivers the likes of Midrand duo Alex Gillespie (ERP Trucking Components Matt Nash Racing Mygale) and Andrew Schofield (Investchem Mygale); Pretoria’s Liam Pienaar (Phoenix Jewellers Fantastic Racing Mygale) and Cameron O’ Connor (Universal Health/Repro Supplies Racing Factors Mygale) from Bedfordview, all of whom must feel due a race win or two and the championship leaders cannot afford to rest on their laurels.
Then there are the experienced Harmen Van Beek who has come back aboard his Maisels Group Fantastic Racing Mygale and quick and hungry youngsters, Dainfern lad Tiago Rebelo (TRMS Racing Factors Mygale) and Siyabonga Mankonkwana (Cervinia Investments/Max Q Matt Nash Racing Mygale), all of whom point towards a recipe for some great action.
All of the above will have the additional challenge of Scott Temple to keep them busy in his Serengeti Golf Estate/KMT Electrical/Venpine Matt Nash Racing entry, while Tygerberg, Cape Town lad Joshua Dolinschek (Makita Power Tools Racing Factors Mygale) and Brendan Tracey from Randburg (Investchem Mygale) will both be keen on a better break in East London and newcomer Gerard Geldenhuys is rapidly coming to grips with his Abacus Divisions Fantastic Racing Mygale.
Never ignore the Investchem Formula 1600 Class B dagga boys, where former Formula Ford champion Constantia, Cape Town driver Claudio Piazza-Musso (Investchem/Race Driver SA) will be out to stem championship leader and reigning Class B champion, Franschhoek based Ian Schofield’s tide aboard his Investchem Mygale and Allen Meyer will be wanting to return to class winning ways in his Edleen Racing Factors van Diemen. Never underestimate David Jermy (Beauty Factory Fantastic Racing Mygale) or PE driver Garth de Villiers flying the Eastern Province home flag in his Durrant Motorsport Racing Factors Mygale.
One thing is for sure; that Road to Indy prize was never going to be a gimme, but the way the chase has run so far, Border race fans have some really good single seater racing to look forward to. See you at the Grand Prix Circuit!