Coertse, Botterill win a MRF SA Rally round each
Chris Coertse and Greg Godrich and their Rally Techinc Mazda 2, and Guy Botterill and Simon Vacy-Lyle’s Gazoo Toyota Starlet each won a round of the MRF Tyres South African Rally Championship at the weekend’s penultimate round Delmas double header.
Coertse and Godrich stormed to Friday’s victory with a five-stage win rout over final test winners and second overall, Würth Rally 2 Kit teammates JJ Potgieter and Tommy du Toit’s Hyundai. Theuns Joubert and Schalk van Heerden’s Salom Labour Brokers Toyota Yaris was third.
Fourth on Friday, Botterill and Vacy-Lyle bounced back to dominate with a clean sweep of four of five of of Saturday’s stages from Potgieter and du Toit, Coertse and Godrich and Joubert and van Heerden. Benjamin Habig and Barry White’s Just Tools VW Polo and Jono Ford Fiesta Van Wyk and Ingrid Jeacocks meanwhile shared out the respective NRC 2 wins.
FRIDAY: COERTSE TAKES MAIDEN MAZDA WIN
Coertse and Godrich benefited a favourable road position to blast into an immediate lead over Potgieter and du Toit, and Botterill and Lyle with Joubert van Heerden in chase on the opening stage on Friday.
NRC 2 leaders Habig and White led van Wyk and Jeacocks, and Toyota Yaris crew Gerald Klopper, George Smalberger and Carolyn Swan’s Shield Polo and Johan Aucamp and Anton Raaths and Mari Ducasse in a Toyota Auris. It was a tough one for championship contenders Johan Strauss and Elzaan Venter’s Subaru, which stopped with transmission trouble.
There was not much change bar Joubert pipping Botterill for third and a reshuffle among the NRC2 runners but both leading NRC 4 entries the mother and daughter crew Andrea and Isabel Raaths and the Edward Strydom and Luné Snyman Toyotas succumbed to a tough stage 2. Coertse then controlled the rally from the front, although Potgieter broke his stage winning strangle to take the final test.
Two DelmaS seconds for Potgieter
So, Coertse and Godrich consolidated their coverall MRF South African Rally Championship advantage with a maiden win for their new Mazda 2 on its second outing. They beat teammates Potgieter and du Toit, in their old car, Joubert van Heerden and Botterill and Lyle. Habig and White took NRC 2 from van Wyk and Jeacocks, Gerald Klopper and Johan Aucamp’s Toyota Etios, Anton Raaths and Mari Ducasse’s Auris and Magriet Potgieter and Rikus Fourie’s Fiesta.
Tenth placed Jonathan Simms and Adam Tyrer took regional honours in their Toyota Tazz from Rocco Huzak and Caro Storm’s Celica GT-Four. NR 3 winners Bruce and Lynton Swatton and NRC 4 survivors Anrico Opperman and Tommy Coetzee’s Shield Polo, and Stuart Stirling and Robin Knighton’s entertaining VW Syncro bus.
SATURDAY: BOTTERILL MAKES DELMAS HIS OWN
Saturday dawned a completely different day in Delmas, with Botterill and Vacy-Lyle this time benefiting a better position as Coertse and Godrich opened the road. Botterill took full advantage and stormed to the opening stage win from Potgieter, Coertse and Joubert. Jono van Wyk meanwhile took the NRC 2 advantage over Habig, Klopper and Smalberger, as Strauss and Venter took another early shower when their Subaru broke a clutch.
The status quo remained unfussed up front as the Delma NRC 2 leaders traded places through the next three stages, but Habig would retire from that duel with transmission trouble after the fourth test. JJ Potgieter then delivered a brilliant final stage win, but that was not enough to prevent Toyota factory duo Botterill and Vacy-Lyle from taking the win in the Starlet.
Van Wyk took NRC 2 in Delmas on Saturday
They ultimately beat the Potgieter du Toit Hyundai by 20 seconds, while Friday winners Chris Coertse and Greg Godrich consolidated their championship advantage by keeping a watching brief in third in their Mazda from the Joubert-van Heerden Yaris. Jono van Wyk and Ingrid Jeacocks added to their Friday Ford Fiesta NRC 2 second with a win from Gerald Klopper and Johan Aucamp’s Toyota Etios and the Magriet Potgieter and Rikus Fourie Fiesta.
Lukas Van Der Merwe and Gert Jansen van Rensburg took the regional win in 8th overall in their Toyota Corolla from NRC 2 duo Anton Raaths and Mari Ducasse’s Auris and George Smalberger and Carolyn Swan’s Polo. Regional crew Jonathan Simms Adam and Tyrer’s Tazz, while Andrea and Isabel Raaths’ Toyota Run X took NRC 4 honours from Edward Strydom and Luné Snyman’s Tazz in 12th and 13th
Regional runners, Quintin Vorster and Scotty Hartslief’s Skyline, Bruce and Lynton Swatton’s Run X, Sarel Coetzer and Ciska Harding’s Datsun 160U and Stuart Stirling and Robin Knighton’s VW Syncro bus entertained ahead of NRC 4 duo Anrico Opperman and Tommy Coetzee’s troubled Polo.
The 2022 MRF Tyres South African Rally Championship comes to a head with the round 11 and 12 double header at the flagship TRACN4 Dullstroom Rally on the weekend of 18 and 19 November.
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