The majority of the category and class championships in the SA Off Road Car Racing Championship…presented by Absa, which have been closely fought affairs in both the Production and Special Vehicle Championships will only be decided at the Carnival City Casino 400 on November 14 and 15.
In the Production Vehicle category Proudly South African Nissan crew Hannes Grobler and Richard Leeke wrapped up the overall and Class T championship when they won the recent Toyota Dealer 400 in the Lydenburg area. This was Nissan’s 14th successive victory and Grobler and Leeke’s ninth win in ten outings.
Newcomer to off road racing Mark Cronje and veteran co-driver Chris Birkin clinched the Class E championship when they finished fourth overall and first in Class E in the Castrol Toyota Hilux 2700i in Mpumalanga and in the process also secured the runner-up spot in the Production Vehicle Championship.
Teammates Kassie Coetzee and Ockie Fourie (Castrol Toyota Hilux KZ-TE) have secured third place in the Production Vehicle Championship and are the runners-up in the Class E championship for four cylinder vehicles with limited modifications.
Hein Grobler and Gerhard Prinsloo (GBS Racing Nissan Hardbody) are fourth in the overall championship and currently lead Class D, which has been closely contested all season long. The Carnival City Casino 400 will decide the Class D championship for six cylinder vehicles with limited modifications with father and son Johan and Marthinus van der Merwe in the Chavani Colt Rodeo, who are fifth in the overall championship and second in the Class D championship, and Deon Schoeman and Jeremy Fall in the Topcar Ferodo Nissan Hardbody all in with a chance of winning the class championship.
Reigning Production Vehicle champions Duncan Vos and Mike Griffith are sixth in the overall championship and third in the Class T championship only one point behind Scott Abraham, who will miss the race due to work commitments in Germany, and co-driver Richard Carolin (Atlas Copco/Chicago Pneumatic Jeep). A strong finish in the season finale will see them gain a number of places in the overall championship but matters are not that clear cut in the Class T championship where there are three crews intent on grabbing the runner-up spot away from Vos and Griffith. Apie Reyneke and Robin Houghton (Castrol Toyota Land Cruiser), who are seventh, 10th placed Giniel de Villiers and Francois Jordaan (Proudly South African Nissan Hardbody) and 11th placed Neil Woolridge and Ken Skjoldhammer (Team Ford Racing Ranger) all have what it takes and this battle for the runner-up spot in the Class T championship will be watched with great interest.
Production Vehicle Championship points after the Toyota Dealer 400:
1. Hannes Grobler / Richard Leeke, Nissan, 234 2. Mark Cronje / Chris Birkin, Toyota, 199 3. Kassie Coetzee / Ockie Fourie, Toyota, 157 4. Hein Grobler / Gerhard Prinsloo, Nissan, 126 5. Johan vd Merwe / Marthinus vd Merwe, Colt, 113 6. Duncan Vos / Mike Griffith, Nissan, 112 7. Apie Reyneke / Robin Houghton, Toyota, 106 8. Manfred Schroder / Jack Peckham, Ford, 102 9. Scott Abraham / Richard Carolin, Jeep, 99 10. Giniel de Villiers / Francois Jordaan, Nissan, 95
The Special Vehicle Championship and the Class A, B and S championships are wide open and will only be decided at the Carnival City Casino 400.
Former Class B champion Giel Nel has been a model of consistency in the single seater Luk Africa Truggy and has been involved in a season long battle for the Special Vehicle Championship lead with Class A championship leaders Gerald Mundell and Billy Bond in the Prolong BAT. Only 27 points separate them in the Drivers Championship while Bond leads the Co-drivers Championship by five points from Marc de Chalain (Rollerbak Racing JRE)
Clint Gibson and Mike Brown are third and fourth respectively in the overall Drivers and Co-drivers championship by virtue of three successive Class B wins in the Praesidium Financial Services BAT and a second overall on the Toyota Dealer 400 in their new Class A BAT. The KwaZulu Natal crew had the race in the bag until they wrong slotted within sight of the finish and handed the win to Mark Corbett and Juan Mohr in the Century Property Developments BAT.
Reigning Class B champion and KwaZulu Natal farmer Marcus Taylor (Rollerbak Racing JRE) is fourth in the overall standings and second in Class B while partner Marc de Chalain has already sewn up the Class B Co-drivers Championship.
Queen Motor Spares Tarka 400 and Sun City 400 winners Gary Bertholdt and Brandon Harcus (Adrenalise Corporate Entertainment BAT) have rocketed up the leader board and are fifth and third in the Drivers and Co-drivers championships respectively. They are capable of winning the Carnival City 400 overall, which could secure them the runner-up spot in the Special Vehicle Championship and the Class A championship.
Nic Goslar and Warren Bowie (O’Hagan’s/Kopanong Hotel Superteam Raceco) are sixth overall and co-leaders with Mohammed Noor and Mohammed Moultsen (Supa Veg Raceco) in Class S. Neither crew entered the Toyota Dealer 400 so their championship battle will only be settled on the Carnival City Casino 400.
Andrew Birkin (WPP Wingfoot), John Moore/Fred Werner (Shell Connix Chenowth) and Terence Marsh/Trevor Ahier (Nashua Mobile Jimco) are eighth, ninth and tenth respectively.
Special Vehicle Championship points after Toyota Dealer 400:
Overall – Drivers:
1. Giel Nel, Truggy, 157 2. Gerald Mundell, BAT, 130 3. Clint Gibson, BAT, 128 4. Marcus Taylor, JRE, 125 5. Gary Bertholdt, BAT, 122
Overall – Co-drivers:
1. Billy Bond, BAT, 130 2. Marc de Chalain, JRE, 125 3. Brandon Harcus, BAT, 122 4. Mike Brown, BAT, 94 5. Mohammed Moultsen, Raceco, 85
Original article from Car