Troubles slow Team acciDent Guru
Rally Team acciDent Guru was really looking forward to Saturday’s Blue Crane Western Cape regional rally with its pair of Class S3 Volkswagen Golf 1 GTis — perhaps even too much so, for the rally brought enough challenges for the team to make up for the rest of the season.
Paul van Wyk held a strong championship lead before the rally and was hoping for another podium finish on his first run with national navigator Henry Kohne reading the notes in the team’s black and red Golf, but a string of delays saw the duo struggling to the finish. “This was one rally we were really happy to finish, in the end” van Wyk sighed in relief. “At least we scored some points to limit any damage our championship lead, but in six stages we had just one clear run.”
The opening stage went well until the famous water splash half way through. “We picked up intermittent misfire and lost about 30 seconds on class leaders,” Kohne explained. “Then we picked up gear selector problems early the second stage limiting us to second, fourth and 6th gears, but we also stopped to assist Ken Naidoo & Divan De Goede who had rolled in the stage, so we were fortunate to escape with average time for the stage.”
“That gear selector eventually broke and we lost five minutes when we had to stop to replace it in Stage 3, but Stage 4 was awesome,” driver van Wyk admitted. “We were third overall on our only clean run for the day, only beaten by the Subarus.” Van Wyk and Kohne’s purple patch was soon at an end however, when that gear selector broke again, causing Paul to jam the car in third to drive out of the stage.
The trouble was not yet over — the sting in the tail being an electric gremlin, which lost the intrepid crew another 14 minutes in the final stage. Undaunted, they sorted the issue to coax the car to the finish. “To finish first one must first finish,” Kohne grinned. “At least we got the second bit right this weekend!”
Team acciDent Guru’s second silver grey Golf piloted by Piet Bakkes with Shaun Visser reading notes had a slightly better run. “We took it easy to feel out our new suspension set-up and power steering set-up and lost a bit of time on class leaders early on,” Bakkes pointed out.”Stage 3 was good - we were third quickest in class but broke a shock absorber on last yump, so we decided to nurse the car home.”
The acciDent Guru lads ended up tenth and eleventh overall and fifth and sixth in class — not quite what they were looking for in spite of a reasonable points haul. “I hope we have now debugged our cars,” Paul van Wyk concluded. “At least both cars are straight and ready the national Swartland Rally in three weeks time — hopefully we’ve now sorted all the niggles — we need to be right back on top of things by then…”