Tick­ets go on sale for Cape Town WRX

THE MO­TOR­SPORT LAP/ Kil­lar­ney to again host fi­nal round of ex­cit­ing tar-gravel world cham­pi­onship

Business Day - Motor News - - MOTOR NEWS - De­nis Droppa

Tick­ets have gone on sale for the FIA World Ral­ly­cross (WRX) Cham­pi­onship round to be held in Cape Town on Novem­ber 24-25 at the Kil­lar­ney In­ter­na­tional race­way.

Fol­low­ing 2017’s suc­cess­ful in­au­gu­ral event that at­tracted more than 27,000 spec­ta­tors, the Gumtree-spon­sored round will again con­clude the World RX sea­son, as the only in­ter­na­tional mo­tor rac­ing event to take place on lo­cal soil in 2018.

One of the world’s most ex­cit­ing forms of mo­tor­sport, WRX sees com­peti­tors rac­ing on a com­bined tar and gravel course with jumps. The rallystyle cars re­put­edly ac­cel­er­ate from 0-100km/h, even faster than For­mula One cars, and the short sprint-style events pro­duce in­tense close-quar­ters rac­ing with plenty of con­tact.

The 12-round cham­pi­onship mostly takes place in Europe but also has two races in North Amer­ica, while the Cape Town event is the sole African round.

WRX su­per­stars will be hunt­ing vic­tory at Kil­lar­ney with de­fend­ing cham­pion Jo­han Kristof­fers­son along with mo­tor­sport le­gends Se­bastien Loeb, Pet­ter Sol­berg and Mat­tias Ek­strom head­lin­ing an en­try list brim­ming with ral­ly­cross tal­ent.

Tick­ets are R220-R750 and can be pur­chased www.tick­et­pros.co.za from

DOVI DAZ­ZLES IN MISANO

Du­cati’s An­drea Dovizioso moved into sec­ond place in this year’s MotoGP stand­ings by win­ning the San Marino Grand Prix at the Misano cir­cuit on Sun­day. Al­though home favourite Valentino Rossi only man­aged a dis­ap­point­ing sev­enth on a track that didn’t suit his Yamaha, and lost sec­ond place in the cham­pi­onship, the Ital­ian fans cel­e­brated an Ital­ian rider win­ning on an Ital­ian ma­chine.

Af­ter qual­i­fy­ing fourth Dovizioso took an early lead and opened a small gap while his team-mate Jorge Lorenzo sparred with reign­ing world cham­pion Marc Mar­quez (Honda) in an ex­cit­ing duel.

It was Dovi’s first win at Misano, his third vic­tory of the sea­son, and Du­cati’s third in a row.

Lorenzo crashed out of sec­ond place on the penul­ti­mate lap and re­joined to cross the line 17th. That left Mar­quez to cross the line sec­ond to ex­tend his cham­pi­onship lead to 221 points over Do­vi­siozo (154) and Rossi (151), with six races left. Bri­tain’s Cal Crutchlow (Honda) took the fi­nal podium slot.

There was con­tro­versy in the Moto2 class when Italy’s Ro­mano Fe­nati was banned for two races — and sub­se­quently fired by his team — af­ter grab­bing the brake lever on ri­val Ste­fano Manzi’s bike fol­low­ing an ear­lier clash. Italy’s Francesco Bag­naia won the race, with SA’s Brad Binder in eighth place.

KIMI MAKES A MOVE

Kimi Räikkö­nen will move from Fer­rari to Alfa Romeo Sauber F1 from 2019, it was an­nounced on Tues­day ahead of this week­end’s Sin­ga­pore round.

End­ing months of spec­u­la­tion about the Finn’s fu­ture, the 2007 For­mula One world cham­pion has signed a twoyear deal with the team where he be­gan his ca­reer in 2001.

In a straight swop, Fer­rari has con­firmed 20-year old rookie Charles Leclerc, cur­rently with Alfa Romeo Sauber, as Räikkö- nen’s re­place­ment along­side four-time world cham­pion Se­bas­tian Vet­tel next sea­son.

Räikkö­nen won the 2017 world cham­pi­onship with Fer­rari and has se­cured 20 Grands Prix wins and 100 podi­ums to date. The Finn is also a fan favourite and more than 70,000 Räikkö­nen fans re­cently signed an on­line pe­ti­tion urg­ing Fer­rari to keep the driver for an­other year rather than re­place him with Leclerc.

Raikkonen, at 38, is the old­est driver in the sport and re­mains the last Fer­rari driver to have won a ti­tle. At Monza, Fer­rari’s home track in Italy, a fort­night ago he started on pole and fin­ished sec­ond to world cham­pion Lewis Hamil­ton to record his 100th ca­reer podium.

“Sign­ing Räikkö­nen as our driver rep­re­sents an im­por­tant pil­lar of our pro­ject, and brings us closer to our tar­get of mak­ing sig­nif­i­cant progress as a team in the near fu­ture,” said Frédéric Vasseur, CEO of Sauber Mo­tor­sport and Team Prin­ci­pal of the Alfa Romeo Sauber F1 Team.

“Kimi’s tal­ent and im­mense ex­pe­ri­ence will con­trib­ute not only to the de­vel­op­ment of our car, but ac­cel­er­ate the growth and de­vel­op­ment of our team.”

High-jump­ing WRX su­per­stars are set to make a sec­ond visit to SA in Novem­ber.

Kimi Raikkonen has signed a two-year con­tract with Sauber.

An­drea Dovizioso cel­e­brates his Misano MotoGP vic­tory.

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