document : Elegant Fuel take home all the spoils at season opener

Elegant Fuel take home all the spoils at season opener
information supplied by: Cross Country Commission (Media) 04 March 2014

358238 Elegant Fuel take home all the spoils at season opener

This past weekend marked the start of the 2014 Donaldson Cross-Country Motor Racing National Championship. The season kicked off in Harrismith with the RFS 450 at a new venue and with a new race format. Race distance has been increased from 400km to 450km for the 2014 championship and team’s reliability and preparation will be put to the test.

The Elegant Fuel race team could not have asked for a better start to the season with Quintin and Karl-Heinz Sullwald in the Elegant Fuel BAT Venom putting their car on pole position after the 100km qualifying race. They were followed closely by Hermann and Wichard Sullwald in the Elegant Fuel STRYKER in third position only 16 seconds off the pace.

“Today both cars had a pretty clean run, small navigational errors cost both teams some time, but fortunately neither one had to get out for any problems. We have some small issues on the cars that we will rectify tonight, but we are in good shape for tomorrow.”

The race got underway on Saturday morning with teams facing two 175km loops to make up the race distance. Unfortunately Hermann and Wichard had a flat early on in the race that dropped them down the field. About 60km later they felt a heavy vibration, they realised the wheel that they had changed had caused damage to the rear wheel studs and they were forced to retire.

Quintin and Kallie were out in the lead and finding the route with defending champions Evan Hutchinson and Danie Stassen in the Motorite BAT Viper. The lead changed numerous times as both crews were getting lost in long grass. Approximately 5km before joining the Friday prologue route Quintin and Kallie found themselves on the wrong side of a fence and this gave the Motorite pair the advantage going into the hallway stop as the road was clear and navigation wouldn’t be a problem.

The race remained poised on the second loop as neither team were slowing down and racing flat out to the end. The Motorite pair made a mistake and got a flat wheel approximately 40km from the end and this gave the advantage back to the Elegant Fuel team. Quintin and Kallie Sullwald in the Elegant Fuel BAT Venom took a comfortable victory in the end finishing three minutes clear of the next competitor.

“Today was exciting, we had a great battle all morning with Motorite and were disappointed when we made the mistake that let them through. We just kept our pace up and kept them within our sights and knew the race win would boil down to not making any more mistakes. Quintin had hardly any power steering the whole race and his fresh air pipe to his helmet broke on the second loop making it a really hot and dusty day for him behind the wheel but he managed to bring the car home and we are really happy with the result”

“It is a great way to start the season and to repay our new and existing sponsors for their belief in our team. We look forward to the rest of the Donaldson Cross-Country Motor Racing National Championship, and are aiming to have both cars on the podium at the next event in Kwa-Zulu Natal.”

Elegant Fuel Racing is further supported by Sullwald Projects, Faith Wheels, Limpopo Tyres Polokwane and Oil Shoppe.

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Tags | Motorsport | Cross Country Commission (Media) | 2014 RFS 450 |