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ABSA South African Championship 2007 Special-Newssection

This is the single-news section of the special of the ABSA South African Offroad Championship series 2007. To see all news please use the link under the article or navigate with the left main-navigation.

ABSA 2007: Spectator friendly Toyota Dealer 400 Rally

Apart from providing the Lydenburg area and Mpumalanga with an economic boost, the Toyota Dealer 400 on November 2 and 3 will again be spectator friendly. The event is the penultimate round of the Absa Off Road Championship and could have a bearing on some tight championship issues in both the Production and Special Vehicle categories. The event, based at the Lydenburg Rugby Club, also provides the region with a major economic boost.

"It is estimated Absa championship races provide the area in which they are held with an economic boost of around R3 million," said chief organiser Willie du Plessis from the South African Motorsport Club. "The race provides a major boost for local hotels, guest lodges and bed and breakfast establishments. Restaurants, filling stations and small business entrepreneurs also benefit and there is a further spin off with competitors and spectators discovering Mpumalanga as a future tourist venue."

Du Plessis added that Lydenburg was within easy reach from Gauteng and Limpopo destinations, and big crowds were expected. With this in mind the organisers had gone out of their way to make the event spectator friendly. The race will start at Lydenburg Toyota in the town centre at 08h00 on Saturday, November 3. The route for the first of three loops will take competitors into the area on either side of the R577 on the way to Dullstroom / Roossenekal.

There are numerous spectator points next to the main tar road or very close to the R577. The leading competitors should arrive back at the designated service points (DSP) at the Lydenburg Rugby Club by 10h15 for a 15 minute decontrol break. The second loop will take competitors towards Sabie on Long Tom Pass where the forest section will start approximately 27 kilometre from Lydenburg off the R37. The first cars should be at Hendriksdal, on the R37, at approximately 11h30.

This year’s route will not cross the R37 at this point, but will turn back into the forest for a short 12 kilometre section towards Long Tom Pass. Spectators returning from Hendriksdal towards Lydenburg on the R37 will find a number of spectator points along a 1,6 kilometre stretch. The competitive section of this loop ends approximately four kilometres closer to Lydenburg. A 37 kilometre open section will take crews back to the DSP where the first cars are expected at approximately 13h00.

The third and final loop will take competitors towards Schoemanskloof and the Kwena Dam on the R36. There are a number of good spectator points next to the R36 with the first crews expected at the finish at the Lydenburg Rugby Club at around 15h00. "The route is varied and should provide crews with an interesting challenge," said du Plessis. "The forest section on loop two is where the race could be won or lost."

A 40 kilometre prologue to determine start position for the race proper will be run from 13h00 on Friday, November 2. Spectator guides will be available at Lydenburg Toyota, where documentation and scrutineering will take place, and at the Lydenburg Rugby Club.

2007/10/23 | 13:57 CET | Editor: MR/HS/Charmaine Fortune

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