Kyalami means my house in Zulu and the mere mention of that name brings back many happy memories for the teams, the drivers, the journos and all those who participated in its success. They’ll all tell you that there was something special about Kyalami.
But, what makes the book accessible to a far wider audience than those who simply want to read the results is that is creates an atmosphere by quoting the people, the organisers and racing drivers involved. There are many humerous behind-the-scenes stories. The fun starts with the foreword by Jody Scheckter by describing his win in the 1975 SA Grand Prix, ‘I took the lead on the second lap and went on to win. The crowd went mad and on the parade lap in true South African style I had beer cans thrown at me. I assumed it was an act of hysterical joy and not a personal attack!’
As a reference source it lists in detail the entry lists and results of five Rand Grands Prix, 19 South African Grands Prix, 26 endurance races and three Motor Cycle Grands Prix. The book only covers the international events otherwise says the author i all the national and club events were to be covered it would have ended up as a trilogy.
André has dedicated the book to both Sir Stirling Moss and his wife, Gill. André met Stirling at the Porsche factory when he headed up the VIP sale department in the early 1960s. Stirling placed an order for a Porsche 904 for his racing team Stirling Moss Automobile Racing Team (SMART). Later when André relocated to London to join the Stirling Moss Paint-a-Car System he met his wife, Gillian (Gill) Scott through the Moss network.
Also included in the book is a chapter on the birth of motor sport in South Africa, dating right back to the first ‘motoring tournament’ held in February 1903 at the Green Point Cycle Track in Cape Town.
A special chapter is also devoted to the famous Kyalami Ranch located just up the road from the circuit. The venue hosted most of the international drivers and it goes without saying that much fun was had with The Ranch a stopover for the crews of Alitalia, BA, KLM, Lufthansa and Swissair. Beautiful air hostesses and handsome racing drivers. Say no more!
There’s a section titled Kyalami Characters that includes the profiles of 20 drivers, among them Dave Charlton, Paddy Driver, John Love, Tony Maggs, Jochen Mass, David Piper, the Scheckter brothers, Jody and Ian, Sarel van der Merwe and Basil van Rooyen.
Included in the book is a DVD containing 80 minutes of rare footages, including the 1969 Republic Day Race, 1969 SA Grand Prix, 1975 SA Grand Prix prize-giving speeches, four laps of on-board footage with Derek Bell in a Porsche 956 and three laps with Alain Prost in a F1 Renault taken during practice for the 1983 SA Grand Prix.