A new title sponsor, new drivers and cars, and a new engine in the class C cars will all be on display at Midvaal Raceway in Meyerton on Saturday, 17 February when about 30 cars will line up on the grid to get the 2018 MotorMart VW Challenge underway.
Class A looks like it is going to be fiercely competitive in 2018 with a host of class and overall champions campaigning there. Stiaan Kriel (Pozidrive / Kalex Polo) is going to have to be at the top of his game if he wants to improve on his 2017 runners-up spot. Former class A champion Rory Atkinson (BHIT Polo) returns to the fold after domination the class C championship in 2017 while Nic Clarke (Auto Suspension Polo) and Lyle Ramsay (Monroe Racing RSA Polo), both former class B champions, make the step up to the premier class as does Shaun Crous (Ancro Building Projects Polo), the 2017 class C runner-up, who joins brother Wayne (Delway Trading Polo) among the contenders. Quinton Needham (MototMart Klerksdorp Polo) had a couple of impressive outings after stepping up to class A part way through last season and will be looking to build on that experience in 2018. Regulars Waldie Meintjes (Marty’s Panel Beaters Polo) and Wayne Masters (Performance Masters Polo) will also be back in the mix at Midvaal.
Over the past couple of seasons class B has produced some of the closest racing in the series and there is no reason to believe that 2018 will be any different. Roberto Joaquim (Cool Freeze / Auto Aircon Polo) had his best ever result in the final event of 2017 and will be out to take that form into the new season. Jacques Smith (Hydra Arc Polo), Wouter Roos (Nathan’s Motorsport Polo) and Chris Dale, who is making the step up from class C in his Pozidrive Polo, are likely to be among those at the head of the field. Others who could feature are Mohamed Dangor (MotorMart Klerksdorp Polo) and Stuart Mack (Race Technology Polo).
Class C cars will be powered by 1600cc 16 valve motors going forward instead of the 2 litre, 8 valve motors used in previous seasons. In order to achieve the aim of attracting newcomers to the class, point scoring for championship purposes will be limited to competitors who have not won a national championship, nor competed in more than six national events in the past three years. While the field is likely to be small at the opening event, as more cars are built the grid will fill up. Philip Croeser (ATE Polo) and Christiaan de Wet (MotorMart Polo) should be among those fighting for the Midvaal podiums.
The VW Challenge would like to acknowledge the valuable support of their sponsors, MotorMart, ATE Brakes, Dicktator Engine Management Systems, Yaskawa and Norbrake who make the series possible.