Danie van Niekerk’s lifelong dream was to be able to race in South African Touring Cars After selling all four of his championship-winning race cars to get himself a GTC SupaCup car, his journey began to get onto the grid and realise his dream.
Many sacrifices were made as well as a huge Investment. “We still don’t know how we are going to be able to fund the season, but you have to start somewhere” says Van Niekerk.
He is grateful to all the sponsors that he acquired for the Cape Town season opener, to be held at Killarney International Raceway on March 4-5, all from the sale of real estate on his car to raise enough funds to compete in his home race As a dedicated competitor, he is also confident that he will be able to raise the budget required to compete in the second round of the season at Zwartkops Raceway on April 22-23, as well as for the remainder of the 2022 calendar.
The team behind the scenes are a group of Danie’s really good friends and family members, including his wife Vicki van Niekerk who will be conducting the Van Niekerk Racing Team’s marketing activities. “Like I know Danie, whatever he does, he puts a 100% effort into and I know that he will be a contender for this year’s championships. We just hope that someone will get on board to back his campaign.”
The Van Niekerk Racing Team also have a few other GTC SupaCup entrants in their stable whom they will be helping with car preparation This will be headed by Ernest Roos, the race engineer behind a host of Van Niekerk’s successful championship campaigns in the Western Cape regional categories. One of these competitors is Paul Luti from Scotland who is set to make his debut in the season opener.
“Budget-wise, we will be one of the teams with the smallest budget on the grid, but we are making up for it with our motivated team spirit” says Danie Van Niekerk.
Van Niekerk started his racing career with his dad and two sisters at the age of 8 in Karting. 2021 marked 30 years that he has been competing in motorsport. His circuit racing career saw him compete in a host of single-seater and saloon car categories. This saw him progress to Class C of the South African Production Car Championship where he won the Rookie title. The following season saw him debuting a Ford Fiesta ST in Class B of the series, the first race car that he built. He won the opening race of the season at his home circuit, an achievement that lured investment from the Ford dealer network for the rest of his campaign.
With the demise of Class B in the series, Van Niekerk focused his attention on the Western Province Clubmans Championship for which he built a BMW race car. This is how he met Luti which paved the way for Van Niekerk to compete in the United Kingdom’s MG Cup for two seasons where he received many accolades. From this came an opportunity to compete in a 24 Hour race with Luti and Chris Bray, from Finishline UK Ltd and one of Luti’s sponsors, at the Spa Francorschamps circuit in Belgium. It was a victorious outing for the trio despite competing in an underpowered car. Not limiting his racing to tar-only, Van Niekerk also competed in local rally and rallycross events.
Van Niekerk made his GTC SupaCup debut in the sixth round of the 2021 season at Zwartkops Raceway while both he and Luti were scheduled to take part in the season finale at the Kyalami Grand Prix Circuit. This event was, however, cancelled due to the impact of the Omicron variant of the COVID-19 pandemic that saw the Kyalami 9 Hour main event postponed.
While he is not the only Capetonian to compete in the 2022 GTC SupaCup, Van Niekerk will be one of the local favourites at Killarney International Raceway.
Issued by Ragdoll Media on behalf of Van Niekerk Racing