South Africa's Champion Karters to Challenge World's Best

Columns: Close Up
As the Rotax MAX Challenge Grand Finals (RMCGF) draws near, all eyes are on the leading nations, including South Africa. Having participated actively in the event since its inception in 2000, South Africa has shown exceptional talent and prowess on the track. Until 2022, South Africa celebrated the most victories (14), making them a formidable team to watch out for (by Motorsport Fanatix)

One driver who has been instrumental in South Africa's success is Cristiano Morgado. He remains the only driver in RMCGF history to have won five titles, four of which he attained in the DD2 Masters class, cementing his legacy as one of the most outstanding drivers to compete in the event. 

South Africa was, however, unfortunate in that in 2021, the emergence of the COVID-19 Omnicrom strain forced them to miss out on the finals held in Bahrain, making this year's appearance in Sakhir their first. It will also be the first time most drivers take to a circuit under floodlights.

This year's event also sees the return of several drivers who participated in Portugal last year. Rafael da Silva (Micro MAX), Caleb Odendaal (Mini MAX), and Sebastian Boyd (DD2) will make consecutive appearances after successfully defending their national titles. Reagile "Spice" Mailula (Mini MAX), the winner of the 2023 African Open, is set to make his RMCGF debut despite qualifying for his third final. Forced to miss two previous finals because of the global COVID-19 pandemic, Mailula will be eager to make an impression on the international stage.

Wian Boshoff (Junior MAX) and KC Ensor-Smith (Senior MAX) also return after partaking in the 2022 event. This year sees five South African debutants in Kent Swartz (Junior MAX), Erich Heystek (Senior MAX), Kian Grottis (DD2) and Jamie Smith (DD2). Flying the South African flag in the DD2 Masters class will be Kyle Lawrence, who made his first RMCGF appearance in DD2 in 2007.

Taking inspiration from the Springboks' success in the 2023 Rugby World Cup, Team South Africa is hopeful to add to their RMCGF win tally as the excitement builds ahead of their departure.


Created by: cggiuliano - 22/11/23

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