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WATCH: Drag racing with JP Smith - 'We must provide street racers with a space where they can legally race'

2019-01-31 11:39

Janine Van der Post

jp smith

Image: Ernest Page

City of Cape Town's mayoral committee member for safety and security, JP Smith, recently met with Killarney commentator and driver Ernest Page to address some of the issues that racers have brought to the table.

Watch as Smith answers questions while being taken for a spin.

Smith had met with racers at the racetrack on Wednesday (January 30) in a bid to come together and find a solution to street racing.

Earlier in 2016, the City of Cape Town and Killarney had collaborated to try and take illegal racing off the streets by providing an event called "Robot Racing" every Wednesday for ordinary petrolheads from 18:30 to 22:00.

However, illegal racing still remains a huge problem in the Western Cape.

READ: 'The street is not the place' - why dangerous drag-racing should be held on a race track

However, enthusiasts have been complaining that the City of Cape Town still targets drivers coming from these events and have their car license discs pulled and are heavily fined for unroadworthy vehicles.

In the video above, Ernest Page asks JP Smith some pressing questions while the politician rides shotgun with him at a legal street racing event at Killarney.

Roadblocks right outside Killarney after "Robot Racing" are high on the agenda.

Alderman Smith tells Page: "We must provide street racers with a space they can legally race, where they don't have us on their backs, and they don't have to look over their shoulder."

He also tells Page that perhaps they can look into extending the strip at Killarney to a top end one or perhaps hosting events at Wingfield or Ysterplaat every alternative week.

Smith also reveals that despite what seems like a harsh attack on speedsters, he is actually a petrolhead at heart.

He admits that he too, used to watch the dices with friends during his younger days, and even took his 1971 Ford Fairlane to "Pivvies".                                                        


He says his job has remarkably few perks and he has to pay speeding and parking fines just like everyone else.

"The best perk is the ride alongs I get to do with the Ghost Squad, and the Metro Police Gang Unit and the Marine Unit. Those ride alongs I live for," says Smith.


Cape Town has been the hot topic of illegal street racing after a severe crash took place earlier in January when a BMW driver has been hospitalised with severe injuries after racing on the N1 highway.

News24 reported this week that new footage apparently of street racer Taufiq Carr crashing his speeding BMW M3 on the N1 in Cape Town indicates that a passenger may have been in the car.

The new video clip appears to have been taken from the left-hand side of the car the night that it crashed into the centre median on the N1 near Century City last week.

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