After 459.3km of door handle-to-door handle racing over 144 laps at race tracks around South Africa, the Engen Volkswagen Cup Championship comes down to three drivers separated by twelve points with 54 still available over the final 22 laps of racing left this season.
The Ferodo Junior Racing Team’s Sheldon van der Linde provisionally leads the title chase by eight points from his nearest rival Dewald Brummer. Daniel Rowe, piloting the #11 VW Polo is the back end of the Ferodo sandwich but is just four points adrift of team manager Ronnie Erasmus’ target of a championship 1-2.
The championship could well be decided by the top six grid draw – a feature of the Volkswagen Cup which sees the top six qualifiers draw their starting grid position out of a box. The grid draw has not been kind to the Ferodo Team, with Daniel and Sheldon invariably drawing low starting slots in spite of dominating the qualifying sessions with 12 pole positions from 14 sessions.
“I’m very proud of what the Team has achieved this year. They have come a long way and we are close to our objective of a 1-2 in the championship”, said Ronnie Erasmus before the final showdown.
Quotes from the star:
Sheldon van der Linde #16: “I have to do my job to the best of my ability. That means maximum points from qualifying and the races. If I start in front, I have a great chance of winning the title, which we have been working towards all year. I would also like to beat my brother’s record as the youngest ever champion.
I’m not phased by the grid draw. I’ve proven I can get to the front. Passing at Zwartkops is quite tricky and you have to be very decisive when you make a move”.