|Apart from a disappointing second round at Zwartkops, Dean Venter (Turnfab Engineering / Manitou Swift) has been in amongst the leaders in every Investchem Formula Ford Kent race this season. At the fourth round of the championship, held at Phakisa Freeway on Saturday, 2 July 2016, he stepped up a gear and won both heats on the day.
Andrew Horne (Xena Chemicals / Budd Power Royale RP31) is making pole position his own in 2016 and it proved no different at Phakisa, the defending champion taking his third successive pole position by a comfortable margin. Venter led the chasing pack with David Jermy (Matt Nash Motorsport Van Diemen) and Andy Schofield (Investchem Reynard) filling the second row of the grid.
Jeff Gable (Taylon Motorsport Van Diemen) and Allen Meyer (Van Diemen) were next up with Alex Vos (Ecurie Zoo Swift) and Dalan Holton (Debella Finance Van Diemen) rounding out the top eight.
At the beginning of the opening heat it looked like Horne was going to put his pole position to good use and leave the field behind on his way to victory but it didn’t work out like that for the championship leader. A stuck throttle didn’t allow him to find fourth gear and Venter slipped past into the lead. Jermy wasn’t sure which way to go to get past the slowing Horne and the pair touched on the approach to turn 2. While Jermy didn’t lose much time, Horne was turned round and dropped way down the field.
From there on Venter had an untroubled run to the flag, going on to take the win by over two seconds. All the action was behind him. Jermy and Schofield were battling it out for the runners up spot while Horne was working his way back through the field to join them. Schofield was the first to find a way past Jermy with Horne following a couple of laps later and, despite Horne’s best efforts, that is how things stayed until the end.
Holton claimed fifth ahead of Vos and Gable with Meyer in eighth.
Race 2 is likely to be remembered as the best of the season. From the outset Venter, Horne and Schofield were involved in a three-way battle that any of them could have won. They were never separated by more than a couple of car lengths and often ran side-by-side even through Phakisa’s high speed sweeps. Someone had to be a winner and at the end of 10 laps of thrilling racing it was Venter that had his nose in front with Horne and Schofield in second and third respectively.
Behind the leading trio, Jermy led the rest of the pack with Gable not far behind. Holton had to settle for sixth ahead of Vos and Steve Venter in the second Turnfab Engineering / Manitou Swift.
On top of giving him the overall win for the day ahead of Horne and Andy Schofield, Venter’s two wins have moved him up to third place on the championship log. Horne has extended his lead to 17 points over Jermy with Venter a further six points back. Ian Schofield, who missed the Phakisa event due to business commitments, drops back to fourth place ahead of Holton and Andy Schofield, who are tied for fifth place.
The 2016 Investchem Formula Ford Kent Championship next takes to the track for round 5 which takes place at Red Star Raceway on Saturday, 6 August.
Photos can be viewed on Facebook.