Tight battle in Special Vehicle category after Sun City 400
information supplied by: Cross Country Commission (Media)
03 August 2013
TIGHT BATTLE IN SPECIAL VEHICLE CATEGORY
With just 12 points separating the three leading crews a tight battle has developed at the top of the Special Vehicle championship with three rounds of the Donaldson Cross Country Championship remaining.
Former champion Hermann and Wichard Sullwald, in the Elegant Fuel Stryker, rocketed to the top of the overall and Class A standings when they won the Toyota Kalahari Botswana 1000 Desert Race. The only marathon event on the calendar offered points and a half, and the Phalaborwa crew made up 35 points on defending champions Evan Hutchison and Danie Stassen in the Motorite BAT Viper.
A solid second place on the Sun City 400 saw the Sullwald father and son crew eke out a 9.5 point lead over Hutchison and Stassen. The Motorite crew were fourth behind race winners Colin Matthews/Rodney Burke (Century Racing CR3), and third placed Mark/Corbett/Julian Hardy (Century Racing CR4) in the Pilanesberg.
Another steady result at Sun City saw Clint Gibson and Gary Campbell (Dirt Sport Components Porter) maintain their championship challenge. The KwaZulu-Natal crew are third in both the overall and Class A title races and are handily placed only 2,5 points adrift of Hutchison and Stassen.
The win in the Pilanesberg lifted Matthews into fourth place in the driver championship where he is 9.5 points adrift of Gibson. Philip de Vries and Johan Viljoen (Conqueror Porter) are new faces in the top five.
De Vries is fifth among the drivers and Viljoen is fourth in the co-driver standings. The pair move ahead of Nick and Ryan Harper in the Motorite BAT Venom.
In the Class A championship de Vries and Viljoen move into fourth behind the Sullwalds, Hutchison/Stassen and Gibson/Campbell. Only three points, however, separated de Vries and Viljoen and the Harpers and former champions Quintin and Kallie Sullwald (Elegant Fuel BAT Venom) who are locked together with the same number of points.
A strong fight back at Sun City after a disappointing prologue saw Swaziland based driver John Thomson and Maurice Zermatten (Zarco) finish second in Class P. It was a result that keeps Thomson and Zermatten at the top of the driver and co-driver standings.
Thomson/Zermatten have a comfortable 27,5 lead over Matthews and former co-driver Alan Smith who was replaced by Rodney Burke at Sun City. Veteran Coetzee Labuscagne and daughter Sandra stay in third place despite two successive non finishes, while Burke leapfrogs into fourth place among the co-drivers after a win on his debut.
The next event on Donaldson Cross Country Championship calendar is the Vryburg 400 in North West Province on September 6 and 7.
Tight battle in Special Vehicle category after Sun City 400.xls (174kB)