History - KZNRRC

Go to content

Main menu

History

A Brief  History of Motorcycle Circuit Racing in Natal now K.Z.N.

Natal saw its first race track in 1953 Roy Hesketh was born. In the 1940 s street racing was the only way in Natal, Durban Beach front and Alexandra Park in Pietermaritzburg.

Then in the early 60's Natal got a Grand Prix Circuit unfortunately it did not last long only a couple of years. It closed accept for Karts and 50cc motorcycles track.

This is the time Short Circuit Racing was born in Natal. S.A'S only world champions Kork Ballington and Jon Ekorold Both Natalians Started racing at Westmead Short Circuit and Roy Hesketh. Roy Hesketh closed in the 80's no race track for Natal riders but this did not stop them. Back to the street they went. During the 80's Umhlanga Rocks Drive was used. Annual street events took place at the Wild Coast Casino, Port Shepstone, Eshowe, Empangeni, Ladysmith and Umhlanga Rocks.

Then Mason's Mill was leased to us on a month to month basis in 1987 Short Circuit got National Status this lasted for 7 years before it lost it's National status.
Idube International Raceway started looking good in the 90's but fizzled away. The only thing good that came from that was the Kart track which motorcycles still use today.

Short Circuit slowed down for a few years. This was a good time for younger riders to start developing.
Classes such as PW50cc, PW80cc, Production 50cc and Racing 50cc remained but the age Dropped. Even during this time we saw Riders moving up the Ranks and going to Long Circuit.

2004 saw a few GP125 coming into the country this was good for  the sport as most of these riders moved to the 600cc class after riding  the 125 for a season or two.

KZN riders that have become World Champions and S.A Champions.

World Champions

1978 K. Ballington 250cc & 350cc
1979 K. Ballington 250cc & 350cc
1980 J. Ekerold 350cc

S.A Champions

1957    G.Burgess   250cc
1959    S.G Setaro 500cc
1959    J.Gray 350cc
1961     R.M Moore 500cc
1961    S.Wilson 250cc
1964    J.Gwillian 250cc
1965    K.Crawford 350cc
1965    J.Gwillian 250cc
1966    TF.Johns 250cc
1967    TF.Johns 250cc
1969     P.Aitken 1000cc
1972     K.Ballington unlimited
1972     M.Fog 350cc
1972     M.Fog 250cc
1973     A.North 350cc
1974     R.Gray 250cc
1976     R.Borrain 350cc
1976     R.Nesbitt 250cc
1977     R.Borrain 500cc
1977     R.Nesbitt 250c
1978     R Gray Formula 1000
1979     P.Ekerold 250cc
1985     R. Wood 250cc
1986     R. Wood 250cc
1987     R. Wood 250cc
1988     D. Emond 250cc
1989     R. Wood 250cc
1990     R. Wood 250cc
1991     T. Crookes 250cc
1994     R. Wood 250cc
1994     S. Norval 125cc
1995     R. Wood 250cc
1996     S. Norval 250cc

S.A Production Motorcycle Championship

1974    A. North
1975    R. Gray
1978    D. Woolley & A. Buys
1982    B. Hudson 1000
1983    R.Gray 750
1983    R. Gray  Superbike
1984    J.Thomas 750
1984    R. Gray Superbike
1985    J. Thomas 575
1986    D. Bristol 575
1988    T. Crookes 400
1988    D. Bristol 600

S.A Superbike Champions

1992   R. Wood Unlimited
1997   R. Wood 600cc
1999   R.Wood 600cc
2002   R. Wood 600cc
2003   R. Wood 600cc
2004   H. Kennaugh 1000cc

S.A Short Circuit Championship

1988    K.D. Robertson 50cc
1988    F. Mendes 125c
1989    F. Mendes 125cc
1990    K.D. Robertson 50cc
1991    B. Crookes 50cc
1992    C. Maas 50cc
1993    D. Ekerold 50cc
1993    S.Norval 125 cc

Other NATAL/KZN Riders that made us proud were John Smith & Martin Watson Racing in Europe from 1961-1975.Mike Grant Racing in europe during 1972
Christopher Rudman 2005 winning KZN and Northern Region 125cc Championship.
James Egan the son of Mike Egan well known in Motorsport circles winning the 2006 KZN and Northern Regions 125cc Championships.
James Egan raced a factory KTM 125cc in Germany finishing 13th,he then went back later in 2006 to Spain to test in the Red Bull Rookie Series.
Both of these riders have gone onto ride 600cc in 2007.
2006 Mathew ScholtZ Won the CBR150 Championship

2007 Mathew finished 2nd in the NR 125 championship which he would have won but he had to miss the last race because of Red Bull Rookies Cup meeting.

Chris Rudman after showing great skills and being offered a ride by Kawasaki SA sadly was killed in a motor vehicle accident in 2008

2008 saw Yamaha SA offer James Egan a ride in their works 600 team and he came 5th in Nationals in 2008. Mathew finished 6th in the Red Bull Moto GP Cup with 3 podiums

2009 James moved to Honda and finished 7th in SA Nationals and Mathew 7th in Red Bull Rookies.

2010 James moved up to Superbikes on board the Ryder BMW and finished 4th in the 2011 nationals. Mathew was invited back for a 3rd year in Red Bull Rookies and raced German and Spanish 125s Championships.

2011 Mathew raced Spanish CEV Moto 2 his first season on a 600 and finished 6th overall.

2012 Mathew has signed for PTR Honda in World Super Sport 600s. James is riding in the UK in the Triumph cup.


Back to content | Back to main menu