After Zwartkops Raceway hosted the opening three rounds, the NGK Spark Plugs SA Superbike Series supported by Bridgestone heads east to Mpumalanga and the Red Star Raceway for the fourth round of the 2020 championship on 25 & 26 September.
After a slightly disappointing opening round, multiple champion Clint Seller (King Price Xtreme Yamaha R1) has taken victory in the next four heats to lead the litre-class championship by two points from David McFadden (RPM Center/Stunt SA/Lights by Linea Yamaha R1) who has yet to finish off the podium this season. Although Lance Isaacs occupies third place in the standings, he is plying his trade in the USA and is unlikely to be back in action here this year. This leaves Garrick Vlok (DCCS Coring, Cutting and Sealing Yamaha R1) as the most likely challenger to the top two. He had his best-ever outing at Zwartkops at the beginning of August, coming away with two second places.
A crash in the opening qualifying session at the last round brought Blaze Baker’s weekend to a premature end. He will be back on his Kawasaki ZX10R looking for points as will Sifiso Themba who will be out on the King Price Extreme Kawasaki ZX10R.
Lady racer Nicole van Aswegen (Gem Auto/Andalaft Ducati 1299) will be back in action in Bridgestone Superbike class, as will her partner, Damian Purificati (Andalaft Racing/Amalgam BMW S1000RR). Luca Bertolini (Izinga Worx/Willcom Racing Yamaha R1) and Ian Thomas (SA Compressor Hire Kawasaki ZX10R) should also be in the mix.
Ricardo Otto (RAW Projects Yamaha R6) had dominated the 600cc class this season. He has built up a 40-point lead over Jared Schultz (ASAP World Yamaha R6) and it is hard to see anyone taking the 2020 crown away from him if he keeps going as he has been. Dino Iozzo (King Price Extreme Yamaha R6) and Brett Roberts (Lights by Linea/PRM Center Yamaha R6) will be both be back in action at Red Star after they missed the last round due to injury.
After an early morning practice session, Friday will see the riders tackle three qualifying sessions to determine grid positions for Saturday’s races. They are scheduled for 10h45 and 13h45.
Unfortunately, due to the government’s Covid-19 restrictions, no spectators will be admitted to Red Star for the event, however, the event will be live streamed.
Published by: Paul Bedford
Picture Caption: Clint Seller has a slender lead at the top of the championship standings