Regional 600cc Ladies Race

13 February 2010

Zwartkops Raceway

The first official ladies superbike racing...

...kicked off months ago, with preparation and training. We’ve had special days organized by Wilms for the ladies to get to know track riding, skills development, grid starts, bike specs and prep, getting to know one another, etc. We’ve all been furiously trying to get everything ready for race 1. We never knew that there was this much stuff to be done to the bikes and registrations and STRESS!

I now know what a kotch-bottle is!

Come on Friday the 12th Feb - practice day at Zwartkops. Wilms booked shed 1 for the ladies to park together... just so we could be entertained as each oke/hubby/boyf got a turn at being glared at for not helping enough. Hehehe!!! Stress was high and we were selling them in 2 liter bottles. We kept losing Lindi into the abyss of ver-verlatenheid. Cheri smoked more siggies than she could probably fit in her handbag.

Jenice drank more of those ‘awful’ slush-puppies than her bladder could handle.

Practice went smooth – 'cept for the heat. Shed one had a zinc roof and I think they were trying to see if they could ROAST us chickens. Every time the bikes came back off the track, the engines lifted the temp with another 2 degrees. That’s not even taking into consideration the tyre warmers... and tempers! The temp measured at 34 outside. Must have been a good 2 to 3 degrees warmer inside the shed.

Jimis and I slept at the pits that night. We camped outside the shed under a mozzie net – bully-beef on the Cadac, prepping the bikes and putting number boards on all the bikes that were still short. Woke up at 3:30am – ready? READY!

Scrutineering went quick and everybody passed. Melissa had to get her chain fixed as it was too long. Jimis had a master link for het, but they had to get a chain cutter in to shorten the chain itself.

We went out for our qualifying. 10 minutes of hard riding to see what the best time was that you could come up with. We did about 3 or 4 lapse when we got red flagged?!? Why??? Did we not go fast enough? Were we having a tea break?

The Triumphs decided to have a quick altercation on corner 4. Max and Nienke, who’s running very close together, picked a line but soon found out that two machines just daren’t fit on it at the same time. The ladies took a hard tumble and bikes got a few scrapes. Both chickens had their bikes sorted out in no time. Nienke lost a back brake – but ever gram you lose off the bike makes it faster, hey? Max’s Triple had almost no damage and the chickens were ready for war again, pistons loaded, pipes blasting.

As we stopped off the track – they marked all our tyres to make sure we don’t swop tyres during heats.

Qualifying Times:

1 (13) Michelle Marais 01:08.627 & 01:08.681

2 (88) Wilmarie Janse van Rensburg 01:08.753 & 01:11.039

3 (21) Nicole van Aswegen 01:08.908 & 01:09.421

4 (19) Jeanine du Rand 01:10.241 & 01:10.324

5 (79) Janine Mitchell 01:10.421 & 01:10.694

6 (47) Skinny van Schalkwyk 01:14.791 & 01:15.992

7 (22) Cassie Annandale 01:15.775 & 01:15.859

8 (29) Deborah Senekal 01:16.116 & 01:18.134

9 (28) Jenice Labuschagne 01:17.605 & 01:17.869

10 (44) Maxine Smith 01:19.549 & 01:22.927

11 (72) Nienke Ferguson 01:21.314 & 01:22.777

12 (69) Lindi Lombard 01:24.739 & 01:26.687

13 (12) Cherilyn Stoltz 01:26.225 & 01:29.295

14 (65) Colleen Christie 01:27.908 & 01:28.515

15 (17) Natalie Carol Brits 01:28.815 & 01:31.813

16 (27) Marleen van Rooyen 01:29.238 & 01:30.627

17 (36) Melissa van Rensburg 01:30.786 & 01:31.469

18 (16) Judith Kerr 01:32.180 & 01:32.867

At 1pm it was time for our first HEAT (…I think the word was made up on the spot to indicate the temperature). We stopped on the grid to find that some of the okes jumped at the opportunity to be brolly-boyz for a day. You guys have no idea how thankful we were for the umbrellas – the sweat was dripping into my boots and streaming out the top. We even had Borat running around with an umbrella, but he looked more like he was trying to impersonate Rhianna. Thanks guys; you cooled us down and put a smile on our hyperventilating faces!

Starting – yeah… I just can’t get myself to let go of the clutch and keep the throttle open:

Crawling out of the block I lost three spots, but was back up two by the time we hit the hairpin. The fast group almost left us standing in dust immediately. The best hope we had was that they wouldn’t lap us. I think I might have even knypped my gat to make sure they don’t catch me on the last lap. About 4 laps in and Cassie went down in corner 1 in front of me. I had to scream at myself not to look and make a sympathy fall. Out of the corner of my eyes I could see blue legs and bike parts between the dust. It was a hard crash and what I heard she broke her collarbone. But she was back at the end of the day to show face:

We got red flagged and we had to stop over at the parking lot. We waited for about 5 minutes and they sent us out again. I think that 5 minutes in the lot was the most uncomfortable time on the track, as there was no shade – my leathers got a nice golden tan.

Another grid start… my favourite - NOT!!! Again, I lost a spot to Jenice, but dived into the hairpin and quickly got it back. Ended the first heat in 6th and very happy that the first race was over.

Wilms decided to play taxi-taxi in her first heat and picked up a piece of wire. She had a flat after two laps and still completed. Not only did she complete - but still came third!!! These chickens were HAASTIG!!!


1 (13) Michelle Marais 8 laps 09:11.429

2 (21) Nicole van Aswegen 8 laps 09:20.506

3 (88) Wilmarie Janse van Rensburg 8 laps 09:23.275

4 (79) Janine Mitchell 8 laps 09:24.531

5 (19) Jeanine du Rand 8 laps 09:30.047

6 (47) Skinny van Schalkwyk 8 laps 10:03.562

7 (28) Jenice Labuschagne 8 laps 10:22.636

8 (29) Deborah Senekal 8 laps 10:24.552

9 (44) Maxine Smith 8 laps 11:16.302

10 (72) Nienke Ferguson 8 laps 11:17.027

11 (69) Lindi Lombard 7 laps 09:59.643

12 (17) Natalie Carol Brits 7 laps 10:31.177

13 (65) Colleen Christie 7 laps 10:31.481

14 (12) Cherilyn Stoltz 6 laps 09:11.903

15 (16) Judith Kerr 6 laps 09:28.271

16 (36) Melissa van Rensburg 6 laps 09:34.564

17 (27) Marleen van Rooyen 6 laps 09:38.387

18 (22) Cassie Annandale 4 laps 04:59.286

Jenice and Deborah behind me were just waiting for me to make a mistake. They’re gonna catch me one of these days. Natalie, Colleen, Cheri and Judith are having their own dice. Melissa and Marleen prepping themselves to blow us away later in the season – don’t you chickens think we can’t see your plans?!?

Everybody was trying to wind down, cool down, sit down and fill-up before the second heat. There was actually a few smiles that broke thru and everybody seemed a bit more relaxed after the first heat – it wasn’t scary… well – not THAT scary.

Heat 2 and everybody had to try and squeeze back into hot, wet, sticky leathers. Next time we will organize some manly slaves with fans to keep us cool – like Cleopatra!

Starting on spot 6 again – I missed the pull-off AGAIN and lost two spots. I had to aggressively fight back to retain position 6! Dem chickens don’t just give you back your spot, hey!!! I could see the first 5 chickens catching up to my tail and really had to hang in there not to be lapped. With the last lap, I just tried not to do anything funny and finish in one piece.

Standing in the lot, I saw Wilms had ANOTHER flat tyre! She still finished heat two and the flat must have been from damage to the rim in heat 1. Nichole’s boyf was standing behind me and told us that Nick’s radiator blew up – all over her visor and screen. She also still finished the race! I can’t imagine that anything will stop these haastige chickens - not even Cadbury’s offering an all you can eat free visit to the factory.


1 (13) Michelle Marais 01:08.435 & 01:08.590

2 (19) Jeanine du Rand 01:09.146 & 01:09.412

3 (79) Janine Mitchell 01:09.449 & 01:09.744

4 (21) Nicole van Aswegen 01:09.225 & 01:09.484

5 (88) Wilmarie Janse van Rensburg 01:09.886 & 01:10.029

6 (47) Skinny van Schalkwyk 01:14.716 & 01:14.857

7 (29) Deborah Senekal 01:16.387 & 01:16.454

8 (28) Jenice Labuschagne 01:16.635 & 01:17.042

9 (44) Maxine Smith 01:21.833 & 01:21.840

10 (69) Lindi Lombard 01:22.776 & 01:22.879

11 (72) Nienke Ferguson 01:23.241 & 01:23.412

12 (17) Natalie Carol Brits 01:25.035 & 01:25.462

13 (65) Colleen Christie 01:29.177 & 01:29.561

14 (16) Judith Kerr 01:32.177 & 01:32.601

15 (36) Melissa van Rensburg 01:33.926 & 01:35.890

16 (27) Marleen van Rooyen 01:34.053 & 01:36.318

The first 5 chickens are impressive and even though I couldn’t watch the battle, I was told it was intense. Everybody was raving about Michelle – being only 15 years old and fearless in every corner:

Nicole chasing on with a blown radiator, Wilms pushing forward on pap tyres, Janine and Jeanine biting at one another’s heels:

The competition is on and SA’s fastest ladies have their claws out.

But the racing does not end there. The development ladies at the back are giving it horns. Check the times to see how close some of the girls ended.


No Name Race 1 Race 2 Total

1 13 Michelle Marais 25 25 50

2 21 Nicole van Aswegen 20 13 33

3 19 Jeanine du Rand 11 20 31

4 79 Janine Mitchell 13 16 29

5 88 Wilmarie Janse van Rensburg 16 11 27

6 47 Skinny van Schalkwyk 10 10 20

7 29 Deborah Senekal 8 9 17

8 28 Jenice Labuschagne 9 8 17

9 44 Maxine Smith 7 7 14

10 69 Lindi Lombard 5 6 11

11 72 Nienke Ferguson 6 5 11

12 17 Natalie Carol Brits 4 4 8

13 65 Colleen Christie 3 3 6

14 16 Judith Kerr 1 2 3

15 12 Cherilyn Stoltz 2 0 2

16 36 Melissa van Rensburg 0 1 1

17 27 Marleen van Rooyen 0 0 0

18 22 Cassie Annandale 0 0 0

You can’t miss the next one! Ladies 600 coming to your track – SOON (…27 March to be exact – at Zwartkops)!!!


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