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Classics headed for Knysna hill-climb

2014-02-24 08:47

TAKING ON THE HILL-CLIMB: Gino Noli will be driving the 1937 DKW F7 Meisterklasse Cabriolette at the 2014 Knysna Hillclimb event in May. Image: Jaguar


A number of priceless cars have been confirmed for Classic Car Friday, part of the 2014 Knysna Speed Festival hillclimb scheduled for May.

One of the vehicles competing is 80-year-old 1937 DKW F7 Meisterklasse Cabriolette to be driven by Gino Noli and, though "minimalist and spindly" might be the best way to describe the 692cc car, almost 80 years ago that was enough to propel it to 85km/h.

In hill-climb mode, Noli removes much of the car’s heavy bodywork, which slowed him the first time he competed, to significantly improve his time up the hill.


Timothy Abbot, one of South Africa’s top track cyclists and a respected authority on early Porsches, will be wearing a different helmet when he straps himself into a classic Porsche 356A - one of the better-known pre-911 Porsches and driven by a four-cylinder motor.

Also Porsche-powered is the interesting Elva Porsche entry of Clive Winterstein. The two-litre, four-cylinder Porsche twin cam engine is extremely rare and rides in a light space-frame chassis. It won the opening round of the European Hillclimb championship way back in in 1964 and had a successful competition career.

The prize for the newest "classic" belongs to Lew Baker’s Mallock Mk6B. This car, a pukka competition car with a twin-cam 1600cc Ford engine, might date back to the late 1960’s but only made its competition debut at the 2012 Knysna Hillclimb.

Baker explained: “I brought it with me when I came to South Africa but never quite got round to assembling it until a couple of years ago."

Lovers of modern performance cars might see these classics as slow but speed is relative to grip and a number of other factors which act on the driver’s senses.

Former race and current stunt driver Deon Joubert said after a crowd-pleasing display of burnouts in a Jaguar at the 2012 hill-climb (the 2013 event was cancelled when the sponsor pulled out): "If you’re talking about the ‘involving experience’ that is not  quite true. When you’re on the limit it doesn’t matter what you're driving, you're still on the limit and the rush is the same.”
Read more on:    jaguar  |  knysna  |  motorsport  |  racing

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