Positive end to van der Watt’s good year

Julian van der Watt ended his 2017 racing season with a first heat win and a fastest lap as he conceded the Investchem South African Formula 1600 championship to arch-rival Dewald Brummer at Zwartkops on Saturday. The second race did not work out his way when Julian made the wrong tyre choice on a drying track, but he still fought home to fourth.
“Firstly congratulations to Dewald – it was an incredible year and we had some epic battles on track most often fighting within millimetres of each other without ever a problem.” Julian admitted. “Well done mate – I look forward to continuing our tussle well into the future.
“I missed out on pole by a fraction, which was a pity because I was held up a little on my best lap and Dewald scored the point he needed to wrap it up with pole, but the race was wonderful. “I had to make a brave move to take the lead from Dean Venter, but it worked and we won with the fastest lap too, which was great.
“We gambled on the track staying slippery enough for wet tyres after it rained just before race 2 and the plan worked for a while,” Camps Bay racer Julian explained. “But it dried pretty quickly and the track came to three of the guys who chose slicks and they caught and passed me. “I had enough pace to hold on to fourth – you win some and you lose some and that was just one of those!”
Julian however enjoyed a strong 2017 race season overall that included winning the Western Province DD2 karting title and ending up second in the national Formula 1600 title race. He was also selected to the MSA Motorsport Development Academy and set the unofficial new lap record at Kyalami while demonstrating the Afrix Ferrari A1GP car during one of his several A1 and Formula Renault 3500 tests through the season.
Julian plans to continue in the new wings and slicks Investchem F1600 next year along with a full season of karting in DD2, should the calendar permit. “The new Formula 1600 championship has great prize money and prize test drives,” Julian concluded. “The cars will also be quicker so its like a step up for me which is cool – bring it on!”