Kyalami’s fastest karting kid Kwanda Mokoena kicked butt at Vereeniging.
Kyalami primary school kid raises the bar during Vereeniging karting championships
EVERY now and then, someone does something sensational in motorsport and Saturday was one of those days at Vereeniging when 12-year-old Kyalami primary school kid Kwanda Mokoena delivered a karting masterclass.
Firstly it is a rare occasion when someone even enters to race in three different karting classes in one day, let alone win a race in each of them, but that’s not all that Kwanda achieved in Saturday’s fourth round of the Northern Regions karting championships. Not only did he also win six of the nine races he started, but he took overall victory in two of the three classes entered as he came within a tantalising five points from taking what would have been a record three class victories in one day.
“I am very tired!” was the first thing Kwanda said after his ninth race of the day. “It was brilliant day though — we got first in Mini Rok, first in Maxterino and second in Junior Rok. We could have won Junior Rok too if our chain hadn’t come off while I was leading race, but I won the other two Junior Rok races — the third one by 12 seconds!”
It’s not the first time that young Kwanda has won both primary school classes on a regional race weekend, although this time he had to deal with a strong out-of-town contingent too. But that never stopped Kwanda from romping to a triple victory as he dominated the Maxterino 60 class, leaving his rivals to scrap in his wake.
Kwanda also took a first, a second and a third place in each heat to also win the primary school Mini Rok 60 cc class overall on a count back, but his luck would not stretch quite far enough to see him take that magic triple, when his kart shed its drive chain to see him retire from the lead of the second heat of the bigger Junior Rok 125 cc class normally raced by highschool kids.
But he drove magnificently, making and pulling off daring moves to pass at every opportunity, passing around the outside of the trickiest corners and imposing himself so significantly on some rivals that they yielded to allow him by, all of which sapped every ounce of energy from his wiry frame. “It was a big effort,” Kwanda admitted. “Now all I want to do is go home, have a nice hot bath and go to sleep. But I must thank my dad and the team — everyone worked so hard — thank you all very much!”
Kwanda returns to Vereeniging for the South African National Karting Finals in two weeks’ time, where he will challenge for both the SA Maxterino and Mini Rok 60cc championship titles. He lies a close second in both, so judging by Saturday’s performance, it would not be wise man who ruled Kwanda out on a historic double title.
An ecstatic Kwanda Mokoena.