Did you know?
At the 1998 Belgian Grand Prix, Damon Hill and Ralf Schumacher finished first and second for team Jordan.
Most followers of Formula 1 Grand Prix fantasise about getting behind the wheel of a single seat car and testing their skills around a track. In South Africa, it's possible. A tour operator in the country offers novice single seat driving packages for groups and individuals who want to burn some rubber.
Fantastic Racing, based in Cape Town, Johannesburg and Pretoria, has a range of single seat vehicles for adventurers to test drive, including two Jordan Formula 1 vehicles driven by Damon Hill and Ralf Schumacher in 1998.
The company also owns a fleet of Reynard 3.5 litre V6 vehicles, which are available for individual experiences or group events. The cars have a top speed of 240km/h, with a 6-speed sequential gearbox that is easy to use. The clutch, brake and accelerator are located in the same order as road vehicles.
Drivers will be given a thorough briefing before being allowed onto the track, to ensure that they are aware of safety procedures, as well as when to begin braking when approaching bends. Full racing uniform, shoes and helmets are provided.
Out on the track, it really isn't as easy it looks: the steering is heavy and after several laps around the track, you'll find yourself short of breath, especially if you are driving at Kyalami or Zwartkops in Gauteng, which are both at high altitude.
The rush you get when you floor the accelerator along the straight is a feeling you'll never forget, however. Because you are so close to the ground, you get a much better appreciation of the way the track disappears beneath you. Prepare for butterflies in your stomach.
Travel tips & Planning info
Who to contact
Fantastic Racing Cape Town
Tel: +27 (0)21 461 1414
Fantastic Racing Johannesburg/Pretoria
Tel: +27 (0)11 466 2433
How to get here
Single seat driving can be experienced in Cape Town (Killarney Racetrack), Johannesburg (Kyalami) and Pretoria (Zwartkops). All of the racetracks are within easy driving distance from an international airport.
Best time to visit
Driving experiences are available throughout the year, except on days when it is too wet for the track to be safely used.
What will it cost
Driving packages start from around R2 500 per person.
What to pack
All driving equipment is provided.