Team Logan #35 turned out to be the class of the field at round 4 of the Prokart SSS endurance Series on Sunday 31 May 2015 at the Vereeniging Kart Circuit. The race was run in an anti-clockwise direction which brings its own challenges for the competitors. Turn 1 being super fast followed by a right left flick flack, which is important to get absolutely right to have a good lap.
Once again qualifying was a close run affair with Karting 101 #101 claiming pole position with a blistering lap of 56, 260 seconds edging out Kart Shoppe #1 by 4/10ths. The top five qualifiers were covered by 6/10ths, so the scene was once again set for some really close racing.
At fall of the flag Karting 101 #101 lead out from Kart Shoppe #1, Team Logan #35, 2P Racing #64, F60 #60, Team GTR #11 and RKT1 #5. Jockeying for position, in the first few laps saw 2P Racing #64 clash with RKT1 #5 sending RKT1 #5 off at turn 1. This lead to some administration for the CoC sorting out who did what and why. Lesson to be learned AGAIN!!!!: You don’t win a 6 hour race in the first five minutes. Newcomers The “A” Team #21, had fortunately left Mad Murdoch at home, suffered a spin early on which left them with lot of ground to make up.
At the end of the one and a half hours Kart Shoppe #1 were leading Team Logan #35 by 10 seconds closely followed by Karting 101 #101, a recovering RKT 1 #5 followed by Team GTR #11 and 2P Racing #64 who were not having it all their own way on this occasion. Team F60 #60 had started to fall way after their star “old fart” driver handed over to one of the properly “old fart” drivers. The same could be said of Karting 101 #101 whose lap times had fallen from 56’s to 58’s with the change of driver. Further down the field Heavyweights #51 were putting in a good run, as were Farmtruckers #45. Kartinator Rosso #20 were in and out of the pits with various issues but were soldiering on keeping out of the way of faster teams. Tata Racing #12, one of the new teams were finding their feet slowly. Mean time Shake and Break #98, oops typo, should be Shake and Bake could be forgiven for perhaps considering a name change after they dropped out after only 55 minutes with mechanical issues. With the first pit stops and driver changes having been completed the racing up front, in fact throughout the field, was as close as at the beginning. Minimising mistakes was extremely important as small off could lose two or three positions.
At the end of three hours it was still Kart Shoppe #1 leading out with Team Logan #35 maintaining the pressure 15 seconds adrift. RKT 1 #5 were maintaining third place a further 9 seconds back and 2P Racing #64 were running fourth a further 12 seconds back. Team GTR #11had dropped back to 6th position and Containerforce #13 had begun moving up the order and were running in 7th place after starting 11th. Meanwhile F60 #60 had run into some issues with the accelerator necessitating some time in the pits which saw them plummet down the field to 19th. Heavyweights #51 and The”A” Team #21 were having a tussle of not and were swapping positions regularly. Furmanite #94 were having a steady race and were involved in the fight with Heavyweights #51 and “A” Team #21.
At the four hour mark it was all change at the top of the leader board. Team Logan #35 had moved into the lead and were about a minute ahead of 2P Racing #64 followed by RKT 1#5, Karting 101 #101, Kart Shoppe #1 and Containerforce #13. Team Dask #14 were putting in a strong run after a slowish start and Splashed Ink #43 and Team GTR #11 had fallen away a bit after strong showing early on. F60 #60 had called it a day and retired to the pub for some elbow exercise. Shortly after the four hour mark Containerforce #13 suffered a broken seat stay which almost resulted in tarmac rash on the bum for the driver. This could not be repaired and they were forced to retire for the first time in ten years of racing in the series.
Five hours into the race and it was still Team Logan #35 leading out 2P Racing #64 by a lap, followed by the ever present RKT 1 #5, Kart Shoppe #1, Karting 101 #101 and Team GTR #11. Both of the latter having staged recoveries of sorts with their fastest drivers at the wheel.
Approaching the final half hour of the race it was still anybody’s race with about a minute covering the top four contenders. The slightest mistake could lead to tears, and it almost did for 2P Racing #64. With about 20 minutes to go their exhaust broke which necessitated an on track stop to remove. This brought Kart Shoppe #1 to within 6 seconds, but they did not seem to be aware that 3rd place was there for the taking and inexplicably their pace dropped off for them to finish in fourth place.
So after six hours of racing Team Logan #35 ran out winners, for the first time, followed by Team RKT 1 #5, who also claimed the Index of Performance, 2P Racing #64, Kart Shoppe #1 and Karting 101 #101. The margin covering the first five finishers was about 1m26secs after 6 hours of racing.
Who says endurance racing is boring.