While the rest of the county was focused on Winnie Mandela’s Funeral, a small group of enthusiasts were making their way to Zwartkops Raceway for the first wet skidpan gymkhana of the year. This event tests the driver’s ability to handle a car on a wet slippery surface through sharp twists and turns.
The ever popular, and technically challenging, course 3 was used once again and as soon as the course was set up it was time for the driver’s briefing held by club chairman Colin van Son. It was soon established that there are very few new entries and our regulars had returned perhaps to settle scores from last year and push themselves even further.
Pretty soon it was time to start and committee members Dylan, Varish and Mpho were ready to set the participants off. Due to some stiff competition, challenges were made and gauntlets were laid among some of the race series participants that were present, people in similar cars, and friendly challenges were made all around.
The BMW Car Club track car “Sandbag” (BMW E46 328i Touring) was also on the skidpan for the first time being piloted by Varish and Mpho, Varish was too slow and Mpho drifted too much so the times are not be taken seriously as they do not reflect the ability of the car.
In the end, each driver got 6 runs on the skidpan, 3 runs on either side. The slowest time was dropped and the average between the 5 quickest runs would determine the overall time for each participant. The participants were then put into classes based the vehicle they were driving and this determined the fastest drivers in each class.
The classes were as follows:
1. - BMW 1 and 2 Series
2. - BMW 3 and 4 Series
3. - BMW e36
4. - BMW Diesel and Classics
5. - FWD non BMW
6. - AWD and RWD non BMW
7. - Mini
For the first event of the year, everything went very quickly and smoothly with the timed runs ending at 11 a.m. This meant that everyone could have untimed fun runs for the next 75 minutes with people teaching techniques to one another and some eventually swapping cars to feel them out. One of the comments at the end was that everyone really enjoyed the “gees” or the spirit on the day which resonated throughout the day.
Great fun was had by both drivers and spectators, with the top 7 competitors finishing within less than a second of each other!
A big thank you to our sponsors Bridgestone for an awesome event!