|What||South African Cross Country Moto Round 4 Report|
|When||Saturday 11 September 2021|
|Community||South Africa National|
Dusty Delmas makes it four winners in four races
KwaZulu Natal hero Bradley Cox tightened his grip on the overall South African National Cross Country Motorcycle championship when the Brother Leader Tread KTM rider beat Franchise Company CIT Kawasaki man Mike Pentecost and Kerim Fitz-Gerald’s Red Bull KTM to victory in a dusty, rocky and occasionally slippery Delmas race on Saturday. In so doing, Cox opened his championship advantage to a handy 19 points, but it is far closer in the various class chases.
OR2 rider Cox had to fight for his overall victory as he made it four different riders and machines to win in the four races so far in 2021. Former motocrosser Fitz-Gerald was quick out of the blocks on his OR2 machine and led the way from OR1 man Pentecost, before Cox clawed back to take a close win from Pentecost and Fitz-Gerald. Just 37 seconds covered the top three as Cox became the first out of province rider to win a round this year as he continues to prepare for his Dakar debut in January.
OR3 lad Davin Cocker's Rockstar Husqvarna harried the leaders as he beat Ian Rall’s similar OR2 MCA Dragon machine to fourth. D’Artagnan Lobjoit’s Pepson Motul Kawasaki was sixth from reigning champion Brett Swanepoel’s Rockstar Husqvarna, Scott Heygate's Alfie Cox KTM and Jaycee Nienaber’s Spherical Husqvarna. Also Dakar bound, reigning OR1 champion Charan Moore was tenth on his Brother KTM, straight off racing the Kalahari Rally through the previous week.
The upshot of all that is Bradley Cox has extended his overall 2021 South African National Cross Country Motorcycle championship advantage to 19 points over KZN rivals Brett Swanepoel, with Michael Pentecost a further two points adrift, subject to official MSA ratification. Botswana rider D’Artagnan Lobjoit leads tight four-man fight for fourth over Gauteng trio Ian Rall, Davin Cocker and Kerim Fitz-Gerald, with just seven points splitting that quartet.
It’s however a different story in the classes, where several of them see splendid title battles raging as the season heads to its finale next month. It's super tight in open class OR1. Mike Pentecost’s second Kawasaki win on the trot over the similarly mounted D’Artagnan Lobjoit sees Pentecost draw level with Swanepoel in the title chase. And Lobjoit is just seven points adrift. Jaycee Nienaber was fourth in the Open class on Saturday from Charan Moore and Hein van Niekerk's KTM.
Cox’s class win over Fitz-Gerald, Rall, Devan Smith's Vans Husqvarna and Juan Niebuhr’s Rhubein KTM saw Dox open his OR2 title advantage to ten points over Rall. Fitz-Gerald is now just four points further adrift. Cocker’s OR3 win over Heygate, Pepson Plastics Kawasaki Motul lad Kyle Mckenzie, Peter Karam's Roost KTM and Erik Ernst Merry’s Husqvarna sees Cocker move two points ahead in that class title chase. Merry and Mackenzie jump up to third and fourth.
Wade Blaauw made it four wins out of four starts in the over-30 Seniors on his Roost KTM, yet again ahead of Deon du Toit's CIT Franchise Kawasaki. Marco Cocci's Enduro Zone Yamaha, Lee Thompson’s Pepson Kawasaki and Dirk Olivier's Shimwells Yamaha followed. And Wayne Farmer took Biker's Warehouse Husqvarna took the over-40 Masters over Warrick van Schalkwyk Roost's KTM and Carel le Roux's Alfie Cox KTM to close down to 9 points adrift le Roux in that title chase.
In Junior action, John Botha took High School honours on his Franchise CIT Husqvarna from Derek Karam's Roost KTM, KTM Durban lad Dylan Jones, Rory Donaldson’s Gas Gas, Branden Swanepoel’s Trademore Sherco and Michael Struik on a P Trimborn KTM. That leaves Jones in a provisional 11 point title lead over Swanepoel and Botha now tied in second.
Cobus Bester took the 85 cc Junior win on his Spherical Holeshot Husqvarna ahead of Thomas Scales’ KTM, Brandon Clarke on another Spherical Husqvarna, Bruno Niebuhr's Rhubein KTM and Johandre Vermaak’s TFC CIT Husqvarna. That means Scales now leads Bester by two points with Clarke a further seven adrift.
All of which means that while Bradley Cox has to simply finish the final race at his home Virginia Hills race on 22 October among the top fourteen machines to clinch the overall title, it’s still all to play for in the classes. All the 2021 SA Cross Country Motorcycle title class fights are going right down to the wire.
Issued on behalf of Trademore SA Cross Country
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