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National MX News : Namibian MX Championships
05.03.2007 WESBANK-MX race next Saturday
After the season's fantastic first race 4 weeks ago, the follow-up race will be held on Saturday, 10th of March, sponsored by Wesbank, an affiliate of First National Bank. The official name of this racing event is WESBANK-Challenge and takes place at the Gallina Moto Cross Park, located 15 kilometres outside of Windhoek, on the road towards Okahandja. The direction to the track is signposted.
The pleasant thing about this 2007 season is the fact that quite a couple of previous top-riders have found their way back to the sport. Coming Saturday we can welcome the former high-flyer Rainer Windisch who, after a 4-year pilot-training, is part of the MX-sport again.
Phil Baard vs Jean Venter
Phil Baard vs Jean Venter
Today let's start with the Kindergarden-Class, the 50cc Class. Nothing compares to Michael Barlow here, but he has to reckon with strong opposition nevertheless. William Smith or Esranel Becker have ambitions to become the day's winner as well.
In the 65cc Class a grandiose race was delivered by Eric Garbers 4 weeks ago, achieving a maximum number of points, and he's willing to repeat this victory next Saturday. Pauli Loots will battle it out with him however! Matthew Nederlof has to get used to the big bike first, but then nothing will stop him from challenging Garbers and Loots. He's definitely got the talent.
It's unbelievable how quick the 85cc Class has become! Here Mark Sternagel is the number one man! Mark is the newcomer from the 65ccm Class, and who'd thought Mark would need an acclimatisation-phase was wrong. Mark came, saw and conquered! He won the first race with a maximum number of points and shocked his fellow contestants Jaco Loots and Schalk Louw.
The presenter, the Windhoek Moto Cross Club, has high hopes that the Clubmen's Class will find back to it's old strength. Not long ago more then 15 protagonists were counted at the starting gate. In this class Marc Ratheiser and Iwan Esterhuizen are the protagonists. Eitsch Santos from Angola will definitely want a podium spot, and he should be able to grab one.
Everyone is curious as to how the Speedcross-Class is going to develop. This class was brought to life by former champion Doolie Engels, who's hope it is to attract those former X-racers back to the sport who can't spend time training regularly due to vocational or personal reasons. These riders will race by means of handicap-start, over a distance of 4 laps. Ian Kotze won ahead of Stephan Gradtke and Doolie Engels in the first race of the season. Doolie expects a couple of newcomers on Saturday, so we can look forward to that.
Frank Klosta
Frank Klosta
Alexander Howard has developed his skills so well, that one has to count him among the favourites in the 125cc Class. Let's see whether he can challenge Mike Swanepoel. Mike is still pretty fast, despite his 39 years of age! He hasn't lost a bit of his smooth riding style. The reigning champion Frank Klosta had some obvious engine problems during the last race. This should be sorted out however, and together with the before-mentioned riders, it should come to a real showdown!
Tony Viljoen
Tony Viljoen
The 125cc riders start together with the Open Class, resulting in a strong field, and riding on the highest level guaranteed by the protagonists of both classes. The favourite in the Open-Class is reigning champion Ronnie Adams. Ex-Champ Arno Engels now wants to prove that he hasn't lost his talent during his 3 years of abstinence from the sport. He has to work on his physical fitness, that's the only thing keeping him from riding way up front. The Angolan José Teixeira is breathing thinner air by now, but he is a real fighter and still has legitimate hopes on a podium spot. However, Sascha Becker and Tony Viljoen have the same ambitions. We can expect an extremely exciting race.
The highlight is as always the "Wesbank King of the Dirt" race, lasting a long 25 minutes + 1 lap. The winner will receive the big trophy, sponsored by the car-financing company Wesbank.
In the supporting programme Quad races will take place. We had an enormous increase in participants in this category and the presenter is curious whether still more 4-Wheelers will show up on Saturday. It is exciting to watch 15 Quads shoot into the first bent, to see the wheat separate from the chaff and the wild chase continue!
Dirk Baard
Dirk Baard
In the Quad-B-Class up to 240cc the winner from 4 weeks ago was Eugene Slippers, ahead of Ecki Spoerer and Empi Pretorius. The Kings' Class is the Quad-A-Class with more than 240cc, here a "3 Kings" race between the acting champion Ronnie Adams, Fanie Steenkamp and Dirk Baard can be expected. These 3 protagonists fight for 1st place with all they've got. Wolfgang Rohl was the champ in the Quad-Clubmen's Class. 4 weeks ago he managed to get past Michael Behnke and André Steinfurth. One can expect these 3 riders up front again during the coming race, however Pearce van Wyk could become the spoilsport.
A real surprise is the Quad-Ladies-Class where 10 women fight for victory and honour. Liezl Davies is the favourite after achieving a maximum number of points in the last race. But Liezl has to reckon with strong opposition in the form of Bollie Bochert and Maike Bochert. Cee-Anne Greyling and Mandy Huysamen are keen on a podium spot as well.
It's wonderful that there is a 'Kindergarden-Class' now, the Mini-Quads-Class. Here Sune Garbers, Jaques Maree and Marko Snyman will fight for the lead.
After the award ceremony the notorious Jägermeister-Party will be held, where popular DJ Coco gets Windhoek's youth partying!
So don't forget the Wesbank Moto Cross Challenge and Jägermeister-Party on the 10th of March on Gallina!
Author: Bernd Kroemer ... [back]
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