Championship drama as extreme weather batters Parys
Giniel de Villiers stole a last gasp South African Rally-Raid Championship in extreme conditions at the Parys 800 double-header over the weekend.
In an event curtailed by torrential rain, treacherous wet conditions and a greasy and muddy route, Gazoo Toyota Hilux crew Shameer Variawa and Danie Stassen won Friday’s 12 km Qualifying Race followed by Horn brothers, Johan and Werner’s Team Hilux DKR Hilux T1+ and de Villiers and Burke’s second Gazoo Hilux.
Lategan & Cummings won a tumultuous Friday
It was however championship leaders Henk Lategan and Brett Cummings (above) who led a trouncing Toyota Gazoo Racing SA DKR Hilux T1+ 1-2-3-4 over de Villiers an his navigator Rodney Burke, Variawa and Stassen and Guy Botterill and Simon Vacy-Lyle, when organisers called it a day after just 110 km of racing as the biblical rains escalated.
Castrol NWM Ford Ranger T1+ brothers Lance Woolridge and Elvéne Vonk, and Gareth and Boyd Dreyer were fifth and sixth from T1.2 two-wheel drive winner Lance Trethewey and Leonard Cremer’s King Price Xtreme Century CR6. FIA T1 winners, rookie Johan de Bruyn and Gerhard Schutte’s VK56 led teammates, Chris Visser and Albert Venter’s Dragon REVO and Nicolas Pienaar and Carl Swanepoel’s Super Energi VK50 to make it three different locally made Red-Lined race vehicles in the T1 top 3.
Young Jayden Els and Armand du Toit took Class T in their King Price Xtreme Duster, while Trace Price Moor and Shaun Braithwaite took Special Vehicle Class A honours in their BAT Venom from Lood Du Preez and Chris Visser Jr.’s Farmers Meat Stryker after new champions Tim Howes and Gary Campbell’s BAT got stuck in the mud. Glen Theron and Craig Galvin took Cass G in their MotoNetix Can-Am.
Saturday was no better in Parys
The driving rain showed no sign of abating for more of the treacherous same in Saturday’s Parys final round 7. The title decider was reduced to a 12 km qualifier and one 86 km loop. Gareth Woolridge and Dreyer’s Ranger took the close qualifier from Variawa and Stassen and Johan and Werner Horn’s Hiluxes. Botterill and Vacy-Lyle then led championship leading teammates Lategan and Cummings away into a treacherous and tumultuous final loop.
While Woolridge and Dreyer’s Ranger (above) sped off to finally beat that 2022 Hilux domination, Botterill and Vacy-Lyle then led championship leading teammates Lategan ran into water-related alternator and power steering issues to retire at the same point that teammates Variawa and Stassen came to a stop. Which meant that second overall was enough for Giniel de Villiers driving with stand-in navigator Burke, to steal his first overall 2022 South African Rally-Raid and FIA T1+ class titles.
Homegrown Red-Lined Motorsport’s Parys cup continued to flowed over when Chris Visser and Albertus Venter (below) stormed to a stunning third overall to take T1 honours in their REVO, ahead of Botterill and Vacy-Lyle and FIA T1.2 winners Trethewey and Cremer’s Century.
Parys was brilliant for Red-Lined Racing
The Horn brothers’ Hilux took sixth overall from the on form Johan de Bruyn and Gerhard Schutte’s Red-Lined VK56 and new FIA T1 champions, Eben Basson and Leander Pienaar’s Hilux and Thomas Bell and Wade Harris in another Red-Lined REVO.
Johan and son Sean van Staden took Class T in their KEC Duster, but second was enough for Jayden Els and Armand du Toit to take that title. The Price Moor and Braithwaite BAT Venom took overall Specials and Class A victory once again from Class G winners, Botterill and Vacy-Lyle then led championship leading teammates Lategan, to close of a challenging and memorable 2022 SA Rally-Raid Championship.