NO sport can survive and grow without new blood, but witnessing the comeback of a true great can be just as exciting. Maybe even more…
That was exactly what thousands of spectators experienced last Saturday when “Oom” Jan Gouws, dealer principal of Novel Motor Company, re-entered the local track racing scene after an absence of nine years. Gous thrilled the crowds with his exceptional driving skills in three heats and let’s just say his comeback was much more impressive than that of Harry Simon!
Gous bought the souped-up Mazda Rotary Capella (1 300 cc) of PW Louw from the Western Province Racing Club on Friday morning, did four practice laps, and entered Saturday’s event where Windhoek drivers took on some hot Capetonian talent as well as oval track and circuit racers from Walvis Bay.
In the first heat, he and fellow-Namibian Christiaan Liebenberg in his Subaru Impreza were at each other’s throats and started a ding-dong battle that would go on till just before sunset. Gous was leading when he spun in spectacular fashion in a corner. Liebenberg passed him and took first spot.
Tension ran high for the second heat, and once again, the two came out with blazing guns. Liebenberg won again after a battery cable came loose on Gus’s Mazda and he had to be content with just eight volts of power. Then came heat three, and seldom have spectators seen such intense dicing. Gous and Liebenberg crossed the finishing line together and it was up to the newly-introduced transponder system to decide the winner.
Gous stopped racing in 2003 after he clinched the National Championships for Oval Racing in his Escort 1 600 cc. He assured Woema that he will make his presence felt during the remainder of the racing season; so expect more fireworks from him and his snowy-white Mazda on 28 July!