This year’s South African Cross Country Championship will be fought over a variety of fronts.
That was apparent after the season-opening Mpumalanga 400 event around Dullstroom. After winning the event overall, Giniel de Villiers/Dennis Murphy (Gazoo Toyota Hilux) lead both the overall Production vehicle and FIA Class championships, followed by Gazoo Toyota teammates Henk Lategan/Brett Cummings in an identical Gazoo Toyota Hilux.
They are followed on the FIA Class points ladder by Cross Country rookie Ernest Roberts and the experienced Riaan Greyling (Red-Lined Motorsport Nissan Navara), their Red-Lined Nissan Navara team-mates, Jaco van Dyk/Michael Rust) and Chris Visser/Philip Herselman (Atlas Copco Toyota Hilux).
In the Class T championship, Lance Woolridge/Ward Huxtable NWR Ford Ranger lead their NWR Ford Ranger team-mates, Gareth Woolridge/Boyd Dreyer, with Gary Bertholdt/Geoff Minnitt (Atlas Copco Toyota Hilux), the Horn brothers, Johan and Werner (Malalane Toyota Hilux) and Jacques van Tonder/Sammy Redelinghuys (Ford Ranger) filling out the top five places.
After a trouble-free run in Dullstroom, David Huddy/Gerhard Schutte (Nissan Navara) lead Class S. KwaZulu-Natal team Lance Trethewey and Adriaan Roets (BAT) will be the team to chase in the Special Vehicle category, after scoring both the overall and Class A categories in Dullstroom.
They are leading Taahir/Talha Moosajee (Tyre Rack Stryker), plus John Telford/Victor Ntsekhe (Calcamite BAT), Sandra Labuscagne-Jonck/Jaco Jonck (Total ASgri Porter) and John Thomson/ Maurice Zermatten (Zarco) in Class A.
In the Side x Side Championship, Mostert brothers Werner and Leon, in the navigator’s seat, are the early leaders after winning the Mpumalanga 400.
Teams in the Side x Side class are now competing for national championship titles and tough competition marked the season opener. Only three points separate the Mosterts from Gerry van der Byl/Andrew Katay in the second place while Ashley Bradbury/ Timmy Botes are third, ahead of Peter Walter/Shaun de Villiers.
All the teams compete with Can-Am Maverick SxS vehicles. The second chance to score points in the 2019 South African Cross Country Championship will be the Berg 400 on May 17 and 18, 10km from Winterton in KZN.