VW CUP GOES DUTCH


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Herbie hits Holland – Steve Chaplin is one of 23 drivers making the Zandvoort trip. Photo: www.imagevaults.co.uk

A field of 23 cars has made it’s way to the Dutch seaside circuit of Zandvoort for the first-ever overseas rounds of the Volkswagen Racing Cup with Fuchs Lubricants. The championship’s third and fourth races of 2010 are set to take place at Zandvoort tomorrow.

Leading the challengers into battle is championship leader Didge Dziurzynski, whose season started in fine style at Oulton Park last month with a race win and a second-place finish. Bournemouth-based Didge, who will race his West End Precision-prepared Golf GTI, is looking forward to it with some trepidation: “I know next to nothing about the circuit – I’ve never been there and the closest I have got to it is on the X-Box, but I guess it will be the same for most people.

“I’m really looking forward to it, though; I’ve never been out to a foreign circuit before. It should be good: we are all prepared and we have no problems with the car following Oulton Park.”

Championship promoter RacingLine has effected a test ban at Zandvoort in the days leading up to the meeting, to ensure a level playing field for all. Practice sessions have taken place today (Friday) so competitors can get acquainted with the track’s quirks.

Didge’s elder brother, Alex, will be in action also in his Corrado, and the Dziurzynski clan is just one of a host of family teams taking part. For the first time, former champion Paul Taylor will be joined on the grid by his father, Tony, who has bought a VR6 Golf with which to make his championship debut at the age of 64. Father-and-son regulars Barrie and Martyn Culley will be racing at Zandvoort also.

Out to top the lot is the Walker family, with truck racing champion Richard taking over elder son Daniel’s KPM Racing-prepared Golf GTI for the Dutch races while Daniel gives the team’s turbodiesel Lupo its maiden race outing. Younger sibling James will be out in a Golf GTI also.

KPM will also be guiding 16-year-old Zoe Wenham through the weekend as she makes her championship debut at the wheel of a Polo GTI and in so doing becomes the Volkswagen Racing Cup’s youngest-ever competitor.

Richard Styrin is vowing to be on the grid also, despite nursing injuries received in a first-round accident. “I broke my wrist, although I didn’t know it at the time,” said the Leeds motor company executive. “The cast is off now and it’s healing nicely, so all should be well.” Golf GTI driver Styrin has also had to undergo an advanced ARDS test to upgrade his racing licence to enable him to race overseas.

Of course a full complement of Racing Cup regulars, like the ‘Herbie’ Beetle of Steve Chaplin and Simon Elliott’s RAC-backed Caddy, will be going Dutch too, to the delight of championship manager Melissa Wright, of RacingLine: “This is the 10th birthday season of the Volkswagen Racing Cup and it’s only fitting that the championship should be making its international debut. We are very pleased that so many competitors are coming along; it will be a real party.”