Andrew Rackstraw certainly has a busy schedule. In and amongst his 1st year Marketing Degree studies, he more often than not is behind the wheel of a four-wheeled racing machine.
This past weekend saw him strap back into his RDSA Formula VW for the local Formula Libre championship at Killarney International Raceway.
It was a tough build up to race week as Rackstraw found himself having to prioritise his varsity work having been away the previous weekend as he drove to an emphatic win in the National Formula 1600 Class. In favour of his studies, he opted to skip out on Friday free practice.
Having missed the last Formula Libre race and not driving his Formula VW since April, it was a big decision not to do any practice and to arrive on race day ready to qualify.
If anyone can rise to the challenge, it’s Rackstraw.
Saturday arrived and you could feel the excitement in the air. It was a very crisp morning as the Cape Town youngster arrived to tackle his first qualifying session in Winter for the 2021 season.
At 8.30am, the sound of engines quickly filled the atmosphere. Rackstraw along with the rest of the Libre cars took to the track. The young man did a superb job to rise to the challenge and managed to put in a competitive time which saw him qualify in P2. An amazing job considering his time spent out of the car.
Rackstaw took up his position on the front row alongside his main Championship Rival. An all out dash into turn1 awaited. Rackstraw got a good launch and held his second position through the opening corners of the 3.2km Killarney Track. Getting more comfortable in the car with every lap, he was able to push out a very respectful lap of 1:10:789. Not the quickest he has been in his Formula VW but by no means slow, especially when one considers a 1000cc superbike manages similar times. Rackstraw held his position for the remainder of the race to come home in P2.
A few tweaks to the setup his machine was ready for Race 2. Again lining up on the front row in P2, Rackstraw absolutely nailed the start. His reactions were lightning fast and with just the right amount of traction, modulated by a mature right foot, he managed to power his way into P1. Having taken the lead, an epic battle ensued between the two drivers as they fought for the win.
Rackstraw would eventually bring it home in first position and a much deserved win to round off the day. This time he managed a 1:10:455 as he carefully managed his way through slower traffic during the race. He was elated with the result. True determination and grit to persevere even when the chips are down is part of what makes Rackstraw such a well rounded racing driver.
It was another epic day of learning for Rackstraw, who continues to take every opportunity to get out and race in his stride.
With no practice it was hard to go into the weekend with expectations. Especially just rocking up on race day with no setup. But all in all it was a good learning weekend coming 2nd in the first race and pulling off a race win in the 2nd race. Huge thanks again has to go to RDSA and my dad for making it possible.
Rackstraw is back in his kart this coming weekend for Round 4 of the WPMC Kart Championships. He will be looking to continue the success in what undoubtedly will be another cracker of a race day.
High speeds and plenty of wheel to wheel action is not something he ever shies away from.
So stay tuned for the latest updates on the website as well as Andrews social media pages.