Setchaba Mashigo Maintains Lead in GR Cup
The GR Cup series, created by Toyota Gazoo Racing SA in 2022, provides an exciting experience for motoring journalists as they go head-to-head on race tracks nationwide.
While the 2022 season saw motoring scribes from various publications, including TopGear South Africa's Publishing Editor, Lerato Matebese competing at the helm of the formidable Gr Yaris hot hatch, this year's season sees motoring journalists competing in the new GR 86.
It was time for the Round 4 of the 2023 Toyota Gazoo Racing SA GR Cup at the Aldo Scribante Race Circuit in Gqeberha.
Following a tight race, points leader Setchaba Mashigo who represents ASAMM, maintained his lead with Denis Droppa from TimesLIVE behind him and The Citizen's Mark Jones occupying the third position.
Toyota SA Vice-President for Customer Services, Anand Pather, was featured as a guest racer for this instalment. He has had the opportunity to race in the GR Yaris Cup and the GR 86 with its RWD configuration.
For pole position, Mashigo set the fastest time of the GR 86 drivers beating Chad Lückhoff by a significant 0.8 seconds, while TimesLive's Denis Dropa settled for the third-fastest time – a tenth of a second behind Lückhoff and a tenth ahead of Jones in the fourth position.
Pather swooped in on the fifth spot, while Brendon Staniforth stormed into sixth for Maroela Media. Reuben van Niekerk, meanwhile, vaulted to seventh, representing Jumping Kids and Wheels24.
From the rolling start, Mashigo blistered his way to an easy victory after pulling away from Lückhoff, who, in an unfortunate turn of events, suffered a puncture that placed him at the back of the pack.
This allowed Droppa to occupy second place and Jones third. This move also saw van Niekerk working his way to the fourth position after passing Staniforth and Pather.
The starting order for the second race was determined by the lap times set during the initial race; Mashigo took pole position and made the most of the opportunity. Lückhoff's tyres held on for the second race, but in the end, Mashigo claimed the win. Droppa secured the second step on the podium while Jones settled for the third position. Van Niekerk finished fourth, with Staniforth claiming fifth position.
With this outcome, Mashigo maintains his advantage in the championship while Jones remains second. Droppa is third in the rankings, with a single point splitting him from Lückhoff in fourth.
Round 5 of the GR Cup will take place at the East London Grand Prix Circuit on 21 and 22 July.