Castrol Team Toyota 1st and 2nd at halfway stage of Toyota 1000 Desert Race
information supplied by: Toyota South Africa - Offroad
24 June 2012
23 June 2012
CASTROL TEAM TOYOTA 1ST AND 2ND AT HALFWAY STAGE OF TOYOTA 1000 DESERT RACE
Results are provisional
Castrol Team Toyota Hilux bakkies took the first two places at the end of the second day of the Toyota Kalahari Botswana 1000 Desert Race near Gaborone this afternoon. After starting second and third this morning on the first day of the race proper, following Friday’s 60-kilometre Donaldson prologue, Duncan Vos and Rob Howie lead by 11 seconds from team-mates Anthony Taylor and Chris Birkin, with third-placed Christiaan du Plooy and Henk Janse van Vuuren (BMW X3) a further 6 min 41 sec in arrears.
Vos, three times a former winner of the longest and toughest event in the Absa Off Road Championship, first took the lead after prologue winners Hannes Grobler and Hennie ter Stege (BMW X3) encountered shock absorber problems and arrived at the halfway compulsory service stop at Kumakwane 19 seconds ahead of the second Castrol Toyota Hilux. Taylor in turn was 2 min 18 sec in front of Thomas Rundle and Juan Mohr (Nissan Navara) after 218 kilometres of fast racing in the sandy and heavily bushed Botswana desert.
The second half of the day’s race was a repeat of the first and both Toyotas pulled away from their challengers as they dropped away with a variety of problems. While just 51 seconds covered the first seven production vehicles competing in this fourth round of the national championship after the prologue, it was a different story today. Fourth-placed privateers Hugo de Bruyn and Henri Hugo (Toyota Hilux) are 11 min 36 sec in arrears with Chris Visser/Japie Badenhorst (Ford Ranger) +12m 27s, Lance Woolridge/Ward Huxtable (Ford Ranger) +20m 11s and privateers Deon Venter/Ian Palmer (Toyota Hilux) in seventh place +24m 27s.
Three privateer Toyota Land Cruisers fill the top places in class D, behind nine class SP cars. Leading are Louis Weichelt and Maret Bezuidenhout in 10th place overall, followed by Cliff Weichelt/Johan Smalberger in 11th place and Johan and Werner Horn in 14th place overall.
“It’s been a good day today,” admitted Castrol Team Toyota principal Glyn Hall. “The lads have done a great job and both cars have performed faultlessly. We still have a full day’s racing tomorrow – and a new 400-kilometre route – so there is much work to be done. We’re in a strong position to push for a win.”
Racing starts tomorrow from Kumakwane, 25 kilometres from Gaborone, at 08.00 and is scheduled to finish back at Kumakwane after two identical loops of 200 kilometres each at around 14.30.
Toyota Acknowledges Its Sponsors and Specialist Official Supplier and Technical Partners
Toyota enjoys a mutually beneficial relationship with Castrol, Innovation Group, NGK, Imperial Group, SKF, Ferodo, Spanjaard, Edgecam and Donaldson.
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