If Lady-Luck found a favourite venue to visit in 2018, it certainly must be the TiNCo Motorsport pit garage on Bridgestone BMW Club Racing Series weekends. Heading into the penultimate round of the 2018 season at Zwartkops Raceway, Antonie Marx had a mere one-point lead in the championship. With the odds stacked against him while struggling with power issues in his Xado BMW M3, he ended the Saturday, October 13 race day in an even stronger position.
“After fitting the new engine there was also some tuning work which needed to be done.”
Explains Marx. “it is sadly only once you’re on the track at the same time as your rivals that you can really judge how big the deficit is and how much must still be done.”
During Saturday morning’s qualifying session Marx set the second fastest time on the Class C grid. In Race 1 he was struggling to maintain the pace and finished in third position. Meanwhile his rivals for the overall championship made up ground. Alan Hilligenn won Class D while Paulo Loureiro recovered well from a mechanical issue during qualifying to finish second in Class B. This saw Marx dropping to second place on the points log; now trailing Hilligenn by one-point. “Our disadvantage was very evident at this stage. There were a few changes that we could make for the second race, but ideally we were really hoping for rain as that would neutralise the power situation.”
Marx’s lack of power in the first race came to his advantage for the start of Race 2 where he again lined up in second place. With the circuit still dry, he swiftly made his way to the front of the class by the second corner. Behind him there was a six-car tussle for second place developing which allowed Marx to build a gap and win the race. Hilligenn retired and Loureiro again finished in second place in Class B.
The results on the day saw Marx extending his lead to four points with Loureiro now occupying second position. Hilligenn now finds himself seven points behind Marx. In the process, Marx also clinched the Class C title for the season and honours for the day. “We certainly had some good fortune today with the results working in our favour. This doesn’t leave us home and dry; think more about it as a bit of a lifeline. There’s still a lot of work ahead for us as we want to be able to win the title on our own efforts alone; ideally by winning both of our remaining races. I’d like to thank Xado and TiNCo Motorsport for the support this weekend.”
Antonie Marx would also like to thank the associate sponsors of the Bridgestone BMW Club Racing Series for making this exciting category possible: Lesavert, Viking, Mean Wraps and Big Boss Auto.
The 2018 Bridgestone BMW Club Racing Series season finale will see Marx making his debut at the Kyalami Grand Prix Circuit on Saturday, December 1.
Story by Reynard Gelderblom – Antonie Marx Racing