Racing world legend Boella Botha, a Pretoria North resident who boasts several racing titles, took to the oval track again for the first time in years recently.
Another legend racer, Andre Maree was also one of the 54 legends who got into their race cars on October 5 and raced around the Mahem race track in Pretoria West for the first time in many years.
The race was the first of its kind in the world and was open to any legend who competed or won titles between 1960 and 2010.
Earlier this week Botha and Maree met at Maree’s business, AAA fuel gas station in the north of Pretoria, to talk about their love for race cars and an upcoming race.
Botha says he started racing in 1989 in a blue Colt GS.
“Then I bought a decent race car, a white Nissan Datsun GX,” Botha said.
He first started racing seriously in 1998 and was also crowned South African champion. Botha has also raced overseas nine times.
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“My very first race car was a red and white Datsun GX, as any race car should be,” Maree said.
Maree, twice crowned South African champion, and Botha decided after the October race they are not ready to put their racing gloves away.
The duo plan to host another Legends race at the Mahem track in January 2020.
Both legends agree that racing is addictive.
“It is the adrenaline,” said Botha.
“The kick you get when the engine roars and your headlight turns on. It’s just as nice.”
“We are not as old and slow as we thought. I was surprised to see that our times today are not that different from way back then,” said Maree.
Before the Legends race last month, both Botha and Maree hadn’t raced on an oval track for more than a decade.
Which is why the two racers decided to put together what they call the ‘cream of the crop’ Legends race.
They promise to put together a race that will be a first of its kind, with 30 cars in the final that will race 50 laps along with a pit stop.
Seven legends from overseas will also attend the race, including the legendary Dean Wood.
There will also be local legends such as Johan Coetzee, Dana Jordaan, Jan Buys and Mark Fry among others who will take part in the race.
More information and other legendary names will be announced closer to the time.
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