For this event Briggs was driving the Chev Lumina used by Groenewald at the opening round and as expected qualifying was dominated by the Team Timken twins as Briggs secured pole position ahead of Jaguar mounted Hennie G, as he’s affectionately known in the team. A solid performance from Richard Pinard saw him eighth on the 20 car grid and in the middle of the closely matched midfield bunch which had ten drivers covered by a second.
Race one saw Groenewald take an easy win, but only after Briggs slid off the track at Shell corner while in the lead on lap two. “This car is quite loose and it got sideways. I caught it, but then it snapped quickly again and there was nothing I could do,” he said.
Rejoining in tenth place his recovery drive was a sight that is seldom seen in motorsport. Taking no prisoners he scythed through the field and by lap seven he was in second place and finished only five seconds behind his teammate.
Pinard put in a good drive and took sixth, having enjoyed being in the thick of a four-car battle fighting for third. “It was great racing and there was so much going on all the time.”
The reversed grid for race two saw a stunning drive from Groenewald as he threaded his way through the field to take the lead on lap six having made up four places on the lap. He was lucky in that there were a number of incidents in front of him which made his task easier, but as he points out, “I didn’t take any risks.”
Briggs’ race came to an end on lap two when went off and got stuck in the gravel at the end of the back straight while trying to pass a gaggle of cars.
After a superb drive Pinard got up as high as second but a moment with leader Gordon Connelly at turn 1 saw him drop down the order and he ended fifth. “I was in a position to win that race if I didn’t try to pass Connelly there,” he explained. “The Wesbank V8 races were full of drama and I think the reverse grid works, but only if the cars keep their positions on the formation lap which doesn’t happen all the time.”
Round three of the Wesbank V8 Supercar Championship takes place at Port Elizabeth on 26 April.