Kyalami’s fastest kart­ing kid Kwanda Mokoena kicked butt at Vereenig­ing.

Kyalami pri­mary school kid raises the bar dur­ing Vereenig­ing kart­ing cham­pi­onships

The Witness - Wheels - - FRONT PAGE -

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.

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