There was a highly successful inaugural Rotax African Open championship in 2011 so now the Rotax Max Challenge organisers will run a second African Open on August 12, 2012. The 2011 event attracted entries from South Africa, Mozambique and Angola; for 2012, karters from Namibia, Zimbabwe, and as far afield as Kenya are also expected to line up on the starting grid! Jennifer Verheul, a South African representative of the Rotax Max Challenge, said: “The race is really taking on the spirit of the continent, and we see it growing to the point where we’ll be attracting entries from even further north.”BACK AT IDUBE Initially, plans were well advanced to the 2012 event in Mozambique, but organisers moved the event back to the tight and demanding Idube circuit outside Durban. The African Open Championship will again be held on Sunday, August 12, 2012, after the third round of the SA Rotax Max Challenge National Karting Championship, to be held at the same venue from August 9 – 11, 2012. “The visiting drivers will no doubt take advantage of being able to practice with the South African Rotax Max Challenge competitors on Thursday and Friday, and also enter the race. They will not score any championship points in round three of our series, but the experience will prove invaluable”, said Verheul Indeed, last year’s visitors were notably quicker at the end of the weekend. One of the major draw-cards of the Africa Open is that the winners in four categories gain an invitation to the Rotax Max Challenge Grand Finals, effectively the world championship for a karting series.HEADED TO GRAND FINALSThe winners of Junior Max (for drivers aged between 13-16), Senior Max (15-plus years), DD2 Grabox (15-plus years) and DD2 Masters (32 years and older) will each win an entry to the Grand Finals. They will join the winners of these categories in our South African Rotax Max Challenge National Karting Championship series, which also gain entries to the event, held at the end of November, 2012 at a new R100-million karting circuit on the Algarve, in Portugal. The most spectacular event on the world karting calendar draws 260 invited entries from 60 countries. Last year, Durban driver Cristiano Morgado entered the DD2 Masters category of the Rotax African Open after a long break from competitive karting. He ended up winning the African Open DD2 category, gained his place in the 2011 Grand Final held in the UAE, and went on to become the World Champion! The Second Rotax African Open event will be organised by the KZN Kart Club. Interested parties can contact him for more information on 082 372 1222 or via e-mail.