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Tuesday, September 25, 2012

AUDI'S MICHAEL STEPHEN CLAIMS 2012 CHAMPIONSHIP!


Nail biting racing at the eighth and penultimate round of the WesBank Super Series held at Killarney on Saturday saw Xtreme Audi driver and defending Production Car class A champion, Michael Stephen; again claim the 2012 Production Car title.


In qualifying, Stephen qualified on pole position and in so doing gained an extra three points for the championship, while teammate Tschops Sipuka ended up eighth on the grid.

In race one, Stephen held the lead in the opening laps but was passed by Subaru driver, Hennie Groenewald. Stephen played it safe and settled for second, rather than taking risks and losing the 10 points on offer. Sipuka moved up from his eighth position start to take a hard fought fifth position in race one setting the fastest lap in the process.

Race two saw a top four inverted grid, with Stephen on third and Sipuka fifth. Stephen quickly moved into second position and chased down the leader. He ran out of laps and settled for second position, with his championship rivals having both fallen out the race. Sipuka had an excellent race once again and moved up to a well-deserved third position.

Starting on pole position in the final heat, Stephen led the chasing pack for the entire race despite some challenges towards the latter part with oil on the track in the final corner and backmarkers to contend with. A determined and focused Stephen did not let this come in the way of his chase for the chequered flag which finally dropped, giving him the much deserved feature race win.   Sipuka’s race was unfortunately not as rewarding. Started third on the grid and maintained his position through the hustle and bustle of the first few corners, the skilled driver was unfortunately hit from behind by Van der Linde’s BMW, forcing him to retire immediately, with suspension damage.

Overall, Stephen finished first overall for the day, while Sipuka DNF in race three prevented him from taking a race day podium slot.

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//PART 2