THE BP Volkswagen rally team campaigned a tough Sasol Rally on Friday and Saturday in Mpumalanga, emerging with their first S2000 podium place of the season after two gruelling days of competition.
Hans Weijs Jnr and Bjorn Degandt rallied their BP Volkswagen Polo S2000 to third place in the event, round two of the South African national rally season. The pair put in a commanding performance to achieve third place in just their second ever event in South Africa – and with a BP Volkswagen Polo S2000 contesting just its second event.
"We were pushing at maximum on Friday," says Weijs. "We did lose a bit of time with one or two issues, but that was fixed overnight and and we got a good result. The team did excellent work on the car for this event and we pushed so very hard for our first podium in just our second event in South Africa."
Weijs and Degandt crossed the finish line in good form to claim their first podium result of the year – a result they mean to repeat and improve on this year.
"It has been a very satisfying result after a week of hard work," says Mike Rowe, head of Volkswagen Motorsport. "A podium result is very rewarding at this point in the development of the new BP Volkswagen Polo S2000, as is having five Volkswagen rally cars finish in the top 10. Add an S2000 Challenge victory and all three podium places in the S1600 class and it has been a very good rally weekend for Volkswagen Motorsport."
The S2000 Challenge competitors, a new category in the national rally championship this season, saw Gugu Zulu and Carl Peskin claim the class victory in their BP Volkswagen Polo Vivo S2000 – finishing sixth overall, just four minutes and 32 seconds behind the overall event leaders.
Zulu and Peskin were ninth at the end of stage one, climbing to seventh by the end of the first day and moving into sixth just three stages from the finish. The pair produced a consistently strong performance throughout the event to finish 20 seconds ahead of their nearest rivals in the class.
For Hergen Fekken and Pierre Arries seventh in the S2000 class was a reward for surviving a tough weekend. Two punctures on the event robbed the pair of several minutes and despite claiming a number of second and third place stage finishes during the two days of competition, there just wasn't enough rally distance for them to close the gap, even though they had climbed from 11th to sixth at one stage.
Their teammates Enzo Kuun and Guy Hodgson fought their way into 11th by the second last stage of the event, also having lost time due to punctures. The pair was unable to make the start of the final stage and were unable to complete the event.
For Megan Verlaque and Hilton Auffray in their BP Volkswagen Polo Vivo S1600 the Sasol Rally produced a second place finish in class. Verlaque and Auffray were sixth in their class after the first stage and moved up four places during the event to finish a strong second at round two of the national championship.
|< Prev||Next >|