With the now iconic annual Jaguar Simola Hillclimb coming up in early May, now in its 10th year, the line-up is starting to take shape.
The Class A cars, including road-going saloons and supercars, are usually the vehicles the public can most relate to, considering these machines are available on the showroom floor.
But the competition is no less fierce than with the race-bred cars in Class B. Last year, Reghard Roets won the final Top 10 shoot-out by a mere 0.075 seconds in his venerable GT-R, setting a record of 44.631 seconds over the 1.9km course.
He’s currently double reigning King of the Hill with saloon and supercar titles under his belt, so this is the man to beat.
The new rivalry comes in the form of the Cronjé brothers, Mark and Gavin, who have claimed multiple championships across a wide range of motorsports. Title sponsor Jaguar has equipped them with a pair of identical Jaguar F-Type SVR Coupés, possibly in a serious attempt to take the event sponsors away from the dominant GT-Rs. It’s a veritable challenge, and expect some sibling rivalry.
Roets says: “I’m sure the two Cronjé brothers will be in contention right from the start. I doubt that I can go much faster than last year in the GT-R, even in better conditions. It’s possible that a lighter and more powerful supercar could go quicker, but I would love to make it three in a row!”
The supercharged V8 Jaguar Coupés will be fighting for class honours against the likes of a very exclusive Mercedes-AMG GT-R entered by Johan Pretorius, Jacques Wheeler’s 2013 McLaren MP4-12C and a pair of Shelby Super Snake Mustangs, driven by Paige Lindenberg and Charles Needham.
On the quiet, literally, Jaguar has called on three icons of South African motorsport to compete in a trio of identical, high-performance SUVs. The kicker is that the three drivers - Mike Briggs, Deon Joubert and Shaun Watson-Smith - will tackle the 1.9km Simola Hill in near silent, all-electric Jaguar I-PACEs. These are guys well-known in the heyday of screaming, petrol-powered touring cars throughout the 1990s.
Driving identical Jaguar I-PACEs, race fans will witness a thrilling race within a race when these historical rivals vie to claim ultimate bragging rights.