Aberdein, Stermin, Liebenberg & O’Connor our SA Rotax Max karting champions join previously crowned 2015 SA ROK-Cup champions Altan Bouw (Mini Rok), Stuart White (Junior Rok) and Chassen Bright (Super Rok) and IAME X30 shifter champion Nathan Parkins.
Jonathan Aberdein, Dino Stermin, Bradley Liebenberg and Cameron O’Connor were crowned South Africa’s 2016 Rotax Max Karting Champions at a scintillating series season finale at Zwartkops Saturday, with Stermin, Liebenberg and Aberdein each booking their seats in the Rotax Max World Karting Finals in Portimao, Portugal in November
It was a pretty amazing feat for both Stermin and Aberdein, both of whom came into karting far later than most of their rivals with no Cadet or primary school class experience and particularly for Stermin, who has been karting for less than three years.
Aberdein (TonyKart) has however since forged an impressive career crowned on Saturday, when he came to Zwartkops leading both the DD2 and Max Challenge classes, but he chose to concentrate only on open age group Challenge 125cc for the weekend. And he did exactly that in championship style, winning all four races on the day to come away with only one second place spoiling a perfect winning championship score in the ten best rounds that count for SA championship points.
Capetonian Aberdein left his opposition in his wake to fight for second on the day and overall, with Durbanites Luca Canderle (Intrepid) and Jordan Sherratt (Birel) joining him on the podium and Gauteng ladies Fabienne Lanz and Ivana Cetinich and Durban’s Robert Whiting making up the top six. Aberdein took the title by 53 points over Lanz, with Whiting, Sherratt, Upton and Cetinich next up.
Dino Stermin (Designer Trims Kosmic) also from Cape Town had to fight back for his high school Junior Max 125cc championship following not finishing the first race, but a second behind overall winner for the day, compatriot Jason Coetzee (RKT Kosmic) and two wins in the final two races was enough for him to bring it home third on the day and overcome Benoni lad Delon Thompson (Birel) and wrest the title by some twelve points.
Race 1 winner Joshua Dias ended fourth on the day from Blaine Rademeyer, Daniel Duminy and Delano Fowler, while Stermin took the title by twelve points in the end from Thompson, with Coetzee, Dias, Fowler and Sebastian Boyd filling out the championship top six.
Until a week ago, Sandton lad Bradley Liebenberg (Birel) faced the prospect of having to claw 25 points back from an on form Jonathan Aberdein to fulfil his dream of winning back-to-back Rotax DD2 gearbox titles, but Aberdein’s decision to concentrate in that Challenge title chase saw Liebenberg with a far simpler task to fulfil. That meant a third race win and a trio of seconds for second overall on the day behind Vereeniging wildcard Arnold Neveling (RKT Kosmic), were easily enough to deliver that special double.
Neveling took the other three DD2 races and a second behind Liebenberg for gold on the day, while Durban’s Benjamin Habig (TonyKart) came out of the count-back better to take third from another wildcard, Nathan Parkins who scored equal points on the day. Chad Maciver and Michael Buchholz closed off the top six as Liebenberg ultimately took an easy championship from Mitchell Licen, Eugene Brittz, Aberdein, Habig and Justin Allison.
Ronnie Baptista (CRG) from Potchefstroom meanwhile made sure of the DD2 Masters title with a pair of wins and a pair of seconds on the day for drivers older then 31 years old on heavier karts to beat John Van Wyk and the winner of the other two races of the day, Cristiano Morgado, with Nicholas and Jennifer Verheul and Jonathan Pieterse next up to see Baptista to the title from Morgado, Nick Verheul, van Wyk and Jonathan Pieterse.
The final championship to go down on the weekend was without doubt the closest fought. Benoni kid Cameron O’Connor (Topkart) had to keep Cape Town rival Aidan Strydom (TurboTech Topkart) in check to take the primary school Maxterino 60cc title and he did exactly that to beat Strydom to third on the day by a solitary point to take the title by just one and a half points.
That championship battle allowed another Cape driver Charl Visser (Battery Energy CRG) to sneak the win for the day with a third race win from O’Connor, who won race 2 and Strydom, while Jayden Els took the other two wins and a retirement to pip Kwanda Mokoena and Joseph Oelz to fourth. O’Connor took the title from Strydom, Visser, Mokoena and Oelz in the end.
The weekend also hosted a national under-8 Cadet challenge race won by Sa’aad Variawa from Gauteng rivals Muhammad Wally and Matthew Morrell.
Article by: Michele Lupini
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