The most important announcement of the evening was that, after more than a decade, Absa will no longer be sponsoring the championship. In their place, a new sponsor in the form of Donaldson Filtration Systems has come to the party.
Another new sponsor was also announced. Force Fuel will now supply fuel to all of the competitors, which means they will not have to lug around their own fuel, which can be inconvenient and even dangerous at times.
Together with the two existing sponsors Ford and Toyota, the Donaldson Championship will aim to provide world-class events in terms of media coverage, rules and regulations and competitive racing. Television will remain the anchor medium, however, radio packages on Jacaranda and OFM will also form part of the coverage.
The cross-country motor-racing championship will now be named the Donaldson Championship with the first event, the RFS 400, starting on 1 March in Gauteng and North-West. The event will again be based at the Tarlton International Raceway near Krugersdorp.
Two new events have been added to the calendar for this year’s championship. The events see an additional race in Mpumalanga, while the second marks a return to Lesotho for the first time in several years.
The popular Imperial Celebrity Challenge will again take place this year with names such as Barry Hilton, Jonty Rhodes and Stefan Terblanche taking part. The Dakar challenge will also take place this year and will also include bikes this time around.