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Brand new African Karting Championships kicks off in South Africa ahead of Karting World Cup

THE inaugural African Karting Cup starts this weekend at the Zwartkops Kart Circuit, in the city of Centurion, Gauteng, from February 15 -17. 

Over 15 countries, including Angola, Kenya, Madagascar, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, Tanzania, South Africa, and Zimbabwe, will be represented by 40 drivers on the karting circuit, signalling the popular rise of young drivers with high ambitions. 

The event will be managed by Motorsport South Africa (MSA) and is an FIA-recognised competition.

MSA chairperson Adrian Stoltz said that the Cup competition was meant to take place at the main Zwartkop Racing Circuit, but announced a last-minute venue change due to safety concerns. 


Regardless of the move, ROK Cup South Africa’s Cindy Van Der Laan said that drivers are thrilled to be driving on one of the country’s “busiest and most modern tracks in the country.”

Additionally, racers will not receive the track layout until the morning of day one of the karting cup.

“It’s a unique format offering two classes, namely OK-J and OK-N with a total of 40 competitors plus the Mini Rok invitational event. What is so exciting is that this is an arrive-and-drive format race, where all 20 competitors per class, OK-J and OK-N, will have the same OTK chassis brand and Vortex pool engines drawn randomly,” said Van der Laan.

“This definitely evens out the field and allows the most talented competitors to stand out and shine,” she says. To add to the excitement, the track layout will be kept secret until Thursday, February 15th.

In addition to giving young drivers a chance to show off their skills, Van Der Laan said that the three-day event allows karting enthusiasts to learn about the racing rules, network with the constructor teams, and receive instruction from qualified instructors in order to improve their own karting. 

“It is also a great confidence booster, teaching kids to believe in their abilities and strive for success,” she said.

African competitors to watch in the OK-J class include Zaydaan Savania from Zimbabwe, David Ivan Andrianjafy, Matheo Rajomarison, and Andi Nathan Rajoelison from Madagascar. 

Other emerging talents to watch in the OK-N class are Jaedon Masiyanise from Zimbabwe, Jacobus van Dyk and Darius Kotze from Namibia, Martin Thyyge Noeigaard and Krrish Vadgama from Kenya, and Roy-Bako Baurch from Nigeria.

According to Van Der Laan, the OK-J driver winners will automatically qualify for the 2025 African Karting Cup, while the OK-N class winners will travel to Europe for the international FIA Karting World Cup. 

A qualifying ticket to the Super Final, which is held in October in Italy, will be awarded to the winner of the Mini Rok Open.

“There is no doubt that for anyone with grand dreams of Motorsport, karting is the place to start and the AKC is the ideal competition to see just what talent the African continent has on offer,”


The FIA is the Federation Internationale d’Automobile, the primary motorsport governing body based in France that awards licences to drivers to compete in higher-class motorsport categories like rally racing, endurance, GT, Formula E, and Formula 1.

Karting is a common starting point for young drivers wishing to race at the pinnacle of motorsport. Known racing drivers from the ranks include South Africa’s DTM (DeutscheMotorTouring) champion Kelvin van der Linde.

“Karting in South Africa produces some exceptional talent. Some big-name drivers over the last few years have included Kelvin van der Linde, Sheldon van der Linde, and Jordan Pepper, to name just a few,” said MSA chairperson Adrian Scholtz. 

“More recently, however, three drivers who stand out for having recently launched their international careers and are making waves in the world of motorsport are Jarrod Waberski, Leyton Fourie, and Kwanda Mokoena.”

Entry is free for spectators, and there will be fun activities for children and fundraising activities on site for attendees to interact with. 


FIA: The Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (International Automobile Federation) is the governing body for motorsport worldwide. They set regulations, issue racing licences, and sanction events across various disciplines, including Formula 1, rally racing, and karting.

Karting Classes:

OK-J is the category for drivers aged 12-14 using 125cc 2-stroke engines, a stepping stone to higher categories.

OK-N is the category for drivers aged 14+ using 125cc 2-stroke engines with different technical specifications than OK-J.

Chassis: The frame of the kart housing the engine, driver, and wheels. In this event, everyone uses the same brand for fairness.

DTM: A prestigious touring car championship in Europe, and is known for racers competing in other classes. Notable names include Formula 1’s Alexander Albon (who currently drives for Williams Racing).

Pool Engines: Engines that are randomly allocated to drivers to minimise equipment advantage and ensure fairness.Super Final (Italy): An annual event culminating the FIA Karting Championship season.