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HEINESPORT ALOE RALLY – 50k Challenge final round

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The Heinsport Aloe rally started on Friday afternoon at 14h00 with a recce allowing competitors to prepare for the rally by driving the stages in non-competitive vehicles, while service crews prepared the rally cars at Rangers Outdoors game farm with the first vehicle leaving for Jacht Vlakte stage at 20h00

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Rally cars were parked and prepared in front of the Boma at Rangers with a back drop of wild game that included inquisitive wildebeest; this is rarely seen as a combination due to the noise and speed of the vehicles. This was the perfect setting for the last event of the year with an atmosphere of excitement and tension in a relaxed wild environment.


After 90 kilometres of special stages Jacht Vlakte, SkietInnibos and Motherwell with more than half the distance covered on Friday evening, drivers and navigators faced challenges of road surface inconsistencies that were deceiving after the recent rains, with water splashes causing a few casualties in the first stage.


The service park was at Innibos Lapa on the outskirts of Dispatch, the gazebo tent city and floodlights attracted the attention of a few spectators who followed the progress of the rally.


Bryan and Andrew Heine in a well prepared Datsun SSS took the early lead this did not deter Rikus Schmidt and Stephno Pieterse who took over the lead from them in Volkswagen Polo and maintained this position to the end. Ashley Bezuidennout and Paul Gillard were leading the championship on points even though driving an older 1400 Citi Golf RA5 development vehicle.Podium Heinsport Aloes


This tortoise and hare story with Schmidt in full flight and Bezuidennout driving cautiously was nail biting and ended with respective drivers and navigators Rickus Schmidt/Stephno Pieterse Volkswagen 1600 winning the rally followed by Neels Vosloo/Kevin Futcher Nissan Sentra 2000 and Nico Smith/Ron Scott Polo 2000.


The prize giving was held in the game farm entertainment thatched roof rondavel with protruding decks overlooking the valley, live county singing folk songs in the back ground was overshadowed by chatter of the day's events amongst the competitors


The 50k championship was won by Ashley Bezuidennout who collected R 50 000 worth of Prizes sponsored by Volkswagen Motorsport, Heinesport, ATS and Cape Fabric Engineering. Second place of R 15000.00 went to Rikus Schmidt and third place R 7 500.00 to Jan Vosloo, a further amount of R 25 000.00 was split amongst the field based on points accumulated.


2014 -50k challenge with new rally cars entering the fray and the level of competition elevated to a point that the front runners are within seconds apart has set the stage for an interesting 2015 challenge.

 

Article written by Neville Bartle

Photos courtesy of Juane Viljoen - view more of her stunning photos here

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