|What||South African Cross Country Auto Round 1 Report|
|When||28-29 February 2020|
|Community||South Africa National|
Dullstroom Cross Country a great challenge
Red-Lined Motoring Adventures enjoyed a challenging but still successful start to the South African Cross Country Auto national championship at a sodden Dullstroom 400 over the leap year weekend. Terence Marsh and Letsego Zulu delivered a fine 11th overall and fourth in Class T in spite of the team being pushed to ready their Red-Lined Nissan Navara in time for the start and a challenging Friday, while Ernest Roberts and Henry Kohne hit trouble after a great showing aboard their FIA class Navara VK56, on what proved a challenging and tricky Mpumalanga route.
It was a case of what could have been for Roberts and Kohne in the Nismo-powered JCP Roofing Nissan Navara VK56. “We had a good prologue Friday afternoon and qualified sixth in the FIA class and were up to fourth in the race 100km from the finish, when we ran into gearbox trouble,” Roberts rued. “Not sure what the problem is yet, but we lost drive and we were out, but I am very happy with how we went until then.
"I have practiced and trained hard and put a lot of effort into preparing for the new season and even lost a bit of weight and we are also very happy with the latest specification of the Red-Lined Nissan Navara VK56, so it was just reward to be running so well. But this is racing and these things happen so let’s wait and see what went wrong, sort it out and get ready for the next race.”
“We had a bit of a disaster when we picked up a puncture midway through the prologue on Friday,” Marsh explained. “First of all we could not stop right away in the forest, so had to find a side road to pull over and then we had issues with the jack. “The T1 cars do not have hydraulic jacks on board and we struggled with the manual device and lost a load of time, which put us at the back of the field for Saturday’s start.
“So we had our work cut out — we started 29th and worked our way up to 11th overall and fourth in Class T, but it was a really, really rough race. “It rained through Friday night on and the route was so rough, hard and technical as it always is in Dullstroom, so when you add the rain and mud, it became quite mad! Conditions were treacherous — among the toughest we have seen in quite a while, so it was good to bring this one home!”
Red-Lined Motoring Adventures gang will be back at it again in 5 weeks time when the South African Cross Country Auto Series returns to Eston in KwaZulu-Natal for the Sugarbelt 400 3-4 April.
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