After his violent fiery crash at Pukekohe Park in round two of the North Island Mazda Racing Series, Roger Beuvink is on track for a return for next month’s New Zealand Grand Prix with the help of his fellow drivers.
Last season’s RX-8 Cup Champion careened into the concrete barrier that divides the main straight from the pitlane on the second lap of Sunday’s opening race.
The head-first collision bulldozed the engine back into the main body of the car before catching into flames.
Marshals were on hand in an instant, and the fire was quickly extinguished. The medical team later cleared a relatively unhurt Beuvink.
The accident galvanised the support of the Mazda Racing Series team. With a rebuild phase championed by drivers Leo Bult and Elton Wichman now in full swing, Beuvink is on course for a return to racing in a donor car ahead of the next round at Hampton Downs.
“Roger had one of the worst incidents we’ve seen in the Mazda Racing Series,” series co-ordinator Steven Spear told Velocity News.
“It is pretty fair to say that while Roger was shaken, we were all a little freaked out, the last thing a driver wants to see in his or anyone else’s car is fire. Thankfully he came out of it relatively unscathed. His car though was a different story.
“As a driver, there is nothing worse than looking at your car like that and thinking ‘my season is done.’
“But entered were the Mazda superheroes Leo Bult and Elton Wichman.
“Taking the bull by the horn, by late Sunday they had a plan in place for Roger.
“On Monday morning a donor car was on a trailer. By Tuesday it was stripped along with his damaged car. Thursday, it was having a cage fitted.
“This week will see them start to transition all the parts over from the damaged car and all going to plan we should see Roger lining up for the NZGP.”
Bult and Wichman have also put in place a course of action for the restoration of Beuvink’s damaged RX-8.
“Both have looked at Rogers old car, figured out that it’s salvageable and are planning to get a new front end placed on and the car fixed up for another driver. So, watch this space.
“Roger is blown away by the support he’s received from the Mazda Racing Series. Parts are coming in to assist with the rebuild and time is being donated from those who have some to get it all squared away.”
The third round of the North Island Championship will be in support of the New Zealand Grand Prix on January 22-24.
It will mark the first time the series has raced on the longer 4km International configuration.