03 March 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Hodges and Rowe take wins at 2014 Engen Volkswagen Cup opener

2014 Engen Volkswagen Cup: Zwartkops – Sheldon van der Linde

Mathew Hodges and Daniel Rowe emerged as winners of the opening rounds of the Engen Volkswagen Cup circuit racing series at the 2014 championship at Zwartkops Raceway, Pretoria on 1 March. As is often the case, the drivers delivered an exciting first pair of races, with a few surprises thrown in for good measure.

Dewald Brummer and Rowe set the early pace in qualifying in their Volkswagen Polo Vivo race cars, with Hodges coming in behind them. For 2014, Hodges is competing in the ‘Masters’ category for drivers over the age of 27, and he hasn’t slowed down. Starting on pole position, he won the first race and came fifth in race two. Hodges is third in the championship standings.

An on-track battle with Brummer saw Rowe defeated, finishing third, handing second place in race one to his foe. But, he soon emerged victorious, taking the chequered flag in a very wet race two, from a sixth place starting position on the grid. Brummer suffered bad luck – a fuel pump problem saw him fall down the order to finish 17th from a pole position start.

Zwartkops was a baptism of fire for 14 year-old Sheldon van der Linde (brother of 2012 Engen Volkswagen Cup champion Kelvin van der Linde), who put in good qualifying performance, ending the second race in second place and even taking the lead during proceedings. Van der Linde didn’t escape unharmed, though, as a close battle with Shaun La Resérvée shattered the driver’s side window of the number 16 Polo Vivo.

Other newcomers to the 2014 Engen Volkswagen Cup championship are Christopher Shorter, Michael Gibson, Shayur Harpal, Anthony Lessing and John Craig. Each had varying levels of success, but the start of the season proved successful with every starter on track at the end of the eight laps to cross the finish line. Round two at Killarney in Cape Town is on 29 March.

RACE RESULTS
Race 1

1 Mathew Hodges (M3: ITR Africa / 959 Panelbeaters / Dickron Motors)
2 Dewald Brummer (2: MAD Racing / GPM)
3 Daniel Rowe (11: Ferodo Racing)

Race 2
1 Daniel Rowe (11: Ferodo Racing)
2 Sheldon van der Linde (16: Ferodo Racing)
3 Jano van der Westhuizen (15: Kwikfix)

Overall
1 Daniel Rowe (11: Ferodo Racing)
2 Sheldon van der Linde (16: Ferodo Racing)
3 Jano van der Westhuizen (15: Kwikfix)

Masters
1 Mathew Hodges (M3: ITR Africa / 959 Panelbeaters / Dickron Motors)
2 Juan Gerber (M8: Carfind.co.za)
3 Trevor Bland (M6: PG Glass)

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