|What||South African Cross Country Moto Round 7 Preview|
|Where||Carletonville, West Rand|
|When||14-15 September 2018|
|Community||South Africa National|
Carletonville an appropriate Cross Country finale
Carletonville out beyond Westonaria to the west of Johannesburg is among the richest gold-producing zones on earth with deep level mines churning out ore as quickly as possible. There will however be a different focus on the area over the weekend of 14-15 September, when Pepson Plastics Husqvarna Racing heads to the West Rand town looking to tie up two National Cross Country Motorcycle championships and then some.
OR1 class star Kenny Gilbert closed right down on the open capacity championship lead with a win last time out in Swaziland, while Pepson Plastics Husqvarna OR2 rider Taki Bogiages heads west with an 11-point lead in the smaller class, where OR2 teammate Travis Ghelig and Masters class man Iain Pepper are both looking to finish the season with a flourish.
Pretoria rider Gilbert has been involved in a season-long fight with archrival Ross Branch, leading the way initially until Branch took the advantage at his home race in the Desert Race and then Kenny struck back in Swaziland. “We had a solid weekend in Swaziland to close Ross’ title advantage down,” Kenny explained. “Which means there’s just one point between us in the overall championship with one race left to run — we are all set for a grandstand finish for sure and it’s all to do at this weekend’s finale in Carletonville — I hope to make my family and team proud!”
Bogiages, also from Pretoria, has had a solid season to take that 11-point advantage into the OR2 championship finale in Carletoinville. “Swaziland was pretty tough, but I scored enough good points to be sure to head to the West Rand in the OR2 championship lead. “My incredible Pepson Plastics Husqvarna team has given the best bike right through the season and this weekend will be no different so its up to me to bring it home in front to reward everyone for an awesome effort this year.”
Boksburg lad Travis Ghelig heads to Carletonville keen to improve his championship lot following a steady debut season in the OR2 class after finishing every race well in points so far: “I sit fourth in the championship and I’m still in the chase for second in the OR2 title race, so I can’t wait for the final race of the year with Pepson Plastics Husqvarna Racing — let’s do this!”
Midrand Masters class rider Iain Pepper is chasing second in the old man’s class for Pepson Plastics Husqvarna. “I’m looking forward to getting back on the bike after 6 weeks despite not training or riding after an injury at the last national in Swaziland,” Iain pointed out. “So I hope all goes well and I can deliver a good race to clinch that second in the Masters championship for 2018.”
“Pepson Plastics Husqvarna Racing is down to the last hurdle on the South African Cross Country Motorcycle Championship chase and we head to Carletonville leading the OR2 title chase and right in there in OR1,” Husqvarna Motorcycles South Africa brand manager Fred Fensham concluded. “Kenny and Taki have given it their all this season, while Travis and Iain have impressed - all of them deserve the very best, so good luck team — bring it home!”