Team KZN’s precision drivers prepare to take on SA’s best spinners in Kimberley
SA’s fastest growing motorsport sees amateur provincial driver teams gather around the cones
THE precision drivers who make up the KZN Spin Team will on March 31 set out for Kimberley to compete against drivers from seven other provinces in the first match in the Battle of the Provinces series.
Captain of the KZN Spin Team, Kurt Volmink, said the series aims to take the many informal spinning, drifting, freestyle and driftkhana events that are held weekly all over South Africa to a provincial level.
The amateur drivers in each province least year held trials to qualify 10 drivers plus a reserve for each team.
The format of the battle pits drivers against the clock on a standardised track, with two cars sharing the floor as they slalom past cones, spin around obstacles, hit target sensors with their wheels, parallel park at speed and finally reverse slide into “the kitchen” — basically a narrow parking bay marked out by cones.
Volmink said the track is designed to test the drivers’ skills, not their cars, and teams can use different vehicles as they see fit.
To avoid human error in judging, sensors and lights show how close the drivers got to the cones without touching them.
“Lights go on to show both the judges and the fans if the drivers stopped perfectly, or not,” said Volmink.
The six fastest drivers of each team get to the final battle of tyre-smoking precision steering that always gets the big crowds who attend on their feet. The parents who attend these day-long events told Wheels it is a perfect family outing for them, with gazebos, gas braais and blankets turning the event into a family picnic.
“This is the cheapest form of motorsport one can do, which is why it is also the fastest growing niche among drivers and fans,” said Volmink.
He said the drivers are all amateurs and no provincial colours are yet awarded.
“We now compete for the pleasure of it, but we are already liaising with the Department of Sports and Recreation to formalise this sport nationally,” Volmink said.
The Kitchen is a parking bay measuring 8 x 5 metres marked out by cones. A driver has to reverse slide at least seven metres deep into the bay, triggering the sensors and activating the “Perfect Light to score 20 points. Tyre bounce: Drivers have to spin in a two-metre half circle as close as possible to a tyre in the centre to activate the light sensors for another 20 points. Side to side: Drivers have to twice drift and then parallel park at high speed into a 7x3 metre parking bay on both sides of the track, faultless parking earns the driver 40 points. Target slide: Drivers have to get the front wheel to within 60 cm from the target, at which point the lights will again show the judges the driver has just earned another 20 points. Stunts: Drivers who gained the full 100 points in the gymkhana course with time left on the clock can do stunts until the time runs out for a bonus 20 points.
Drivers who make contact with the other car on the track, or any of the cones and obstacles, lose five points per contact.
If the contact is hard enough to cause damage to the other car, the offending driver will be disqualified and will forfeit all points.
Drivers can call a time-out within the first 30 seconds of battle in the event of mechanical failure. The driver will then be allowed to attempt to repair the issue during the next three battles, after which he or she has to be back on the starting line, or lose the battle.
Spinning, drifting and freestyle fans in Msunduzi can book February 24 for an all day spinfest at Masons Mill. Kurt Volmink, treasurer of the KZN Ride and Slide Club that takes on the six other provinces in Kimberley on March 31, told Wheels that Team...