The Renergen 400, an event generously supported by Renergen, a prominent renewable energy producer, is set to take place in Welkom at the renowned Phakisa Raceway.
This rally is designated as a super event, commencing with a brief Pirelli Qualifying Race on Friday October 6. This is followed by a challenging 58km circuit on the same day. The event culminates on Saturday October 7, with two additional circuits.
At 10:15 on Friday, teams will embark on a 15km qualifier, commencing at the Phakisa Raceway and utilising half of the track before heading towards Odendaalsrus. Competitors will encounter high-speed sections in proximity to the racetrack and will subsequently cross the R70 en route to Phakisa, where they will conclude the qualifier on the other half of the track, finishing at the race tower.
The qualifier will determine the starting order for the initial 58km loop, commencing at 13:15. This route mirrors the qualifying course initially, before branching off to navigate fast tracks through the maize fields, leading towards Harcos Chicken Farm. The course then crosses the R70 towards Riebeeckstad, before returning to Phakisa via the mine dump near the town.
Expect swift tracks on the mining property, coupled with technical sections that demand precision. Subsequent to traversing twisty roads through maize fields, competitors will re-enter the raceway for a final sprint to the finish line.
The outcomes from the first day will dictate the starting order for the first of two 164km loops scheduled for Saturday.
The route will run alongside the Nyala Shaft mine dump before progressing towards the small farming town of Bultfontein. From there, rapid tracks adjacent to maize fields will lead them towards the Theronia Silostrat Depot, involving a crossing of the R710. Expect twisty cultivated fields, followed by navigation along the canal road, featuring narrow gates and concrete bridges, alongside technical tracks requiring vigilance.
Then the route veers from the canal track, traversing further high-speed tracks adjacent to maize fields. It will cross the R30 once more, approaching the mine dumps of the Bambanani mine shaft and including several narrow bridges over ditches. The course will then direct teams towards Flamingo Lake near the airport, involving a brief decontrol on the R30.
Teams will navigate a maze of tracks around the lake, challenging navigators to keep them on course. The excitement continues as they encounter various water crossings and approach another mine dump after crossing the R710. As the finish line nears, teams will venture behind the Welkom cemetery, tackling a few technical sections for a final adrenaline rush before utilising the racetrack for the sprint to the finish.
A mandatory 30-minute decontrol will occur at the designated service point before teams embark on the same circuit once more, ultimately crossing the finish line and participating in the podium ceremonies.
As the penultimate round of the 2023 SA Rally-Raid Championship and with the Free State’s fast and action-packed tracks, the Renergen 400 promises to keep competitors, their teams, spectators and enthusiasts entertained over the two exciting days.
Source: SACCS / Photos: Supplied