The Highveld cold at Delmas might have kept a few teams back home, but the ones that did brace the cold had warm results with only one of the competing teams not making it all the way.
The second of the new Suzuki 4:8:12 Endurance Series of circuit motorcycling events was held at Red Star Raceway near Delmas with nine teams boasting three or more riders each bracing the cold conditions.
One of the “teams” however did not have the luxury of a three-rider support, going it alone in the name of charity.
Greg Moloney completed 135 laps all on his own, which was 73 laps more than any single member of any of the other endurance teams.
“That was 540km of riding in 6 hours and 45 minutes, 15 minutes more than last year’s 8-hour at the same track,” said Moloney.
Greg raises funds for charity based on the amount of laps and time in the saddle, and on Saturday rode to collect R35 000 for an electric wheel chair for Fred van Deventer. (See Facebook “another 27for48” for details).
The event, the second round of the 2015 Suzuki 4:8:12 Endurance Circuit Racing series, took place on Saturday and was won by the professional team of Uncle Andy Racing Pitbull completing 218 laps on a BMW HP4.
Although the 8-hour was won by a BMW overall, Suzukis took the honours in all the other classes.
Suzuki motorcycles were second in the Pro Class and won the Club and Rookie Classes as well.
The winning Pro Class (overall and class) team, Uncle Andy Racing’s Greg Gildenhuys, Clinton Sellers and Kyle Robinson, completed 218 laps.
Second overall and second in the Pro Class were Darryn Upton, Darien Keyser, Clinton Pienaar and AJ Venter, racing as Uncle Andy Racing on a Suzuki GSX 750R (209 laps).
The Club Class was won by the RSR Stars on their Suzuki GSXR 1000, completing a very competitive 205 laps.
The Rookie Class was won by the Team Bike Show on a Suzuki GSR 750 that went 180 times around the 4-km circuit. They were 5th overall – just eight laps behind 4th-placed Fourways Flyers (Kawasaki Z1000).
Team 66 were classified runners-up in the Rookie Class after completing 161 laps on their Suzuki GSX 600, which were a mere four laps ahead of last-placed TCO Construction riders on their Honda CBR (157 laps).
The only non-finishing team (within 66% of the laps of the winning riders) were the Ducati riders of the Uncle Andy Racing team who managed to complete 74 laps before technical issues brought a halt to their 8-hour event after just three hours.
“As opposed to the first endurance of only four hours, the teams had to manage tyre and brake pad changes in their pit stops as well,” said Suzuki Auto SA Motorcycle Sales Manager Stuart Baker.
“Crew chiefs had to make crucial calls on pit tactics, and for all but one team things played out extremely well,” said Baker.
The Suzuki 4:8:12 Endurance series, which originally took off in 2014, started in February with the 4-hour, followed by this weekend’s 8-hour event, and will be rounded off in October with the last and longest event, the 12-hour Suzuki Endurance.
The series is open to riders from all walks of life, giving novices the opportunity to break into the exciting world of motorcycle circuit racing to test and develop their ability and talent to race a bike in a safe environment as opposed to blasting down the street, and is based on the principle of legendary races such as the Suzuki 8-hour in Japan and the Bol d’Or 24-hour endurance race in France.
Teams of a minimum of three and a maximum of four riders can enter any bike of their choice. There are absolutely no restrictions.
Competitors are divided into three categories – the Pro Class for experienced riders, the Club Class for riders who have been on a circuit before, and the Rookie Class for motorcycle racing novices.
The 8-hour was run in an anti-clockwise direction, and the circuit will now be switched to a clockwise direction for the third and final series event, the 12-hour on the 10th of October 2015.
• Suzuki as the title sponsor of the series will sponsor the main prize at the end of the series, a GSXR 750 to be race-prepared by ?din Racing.
In addition to the main prize of the sponsored Suzuki GSXR750 the teams contesting the complete Suzuki / ?DIN series will have the opportunity to win class prizes as well as contingency prizes from participating vendors, including BELL which has come forward as the day sponsor.
• Catch all the action on DSTV Channel 189’s “The Bike Show” with presenters Matt, Harry and Donovan piloting the Suzuki GSR 750 in this year’s series.