|Dakar Challenge: Team Rhide SA ready for the Dakar Challenge in Botswana|
After a successful outing at the fourth round of the "South African National Off-road Quad Championship" at Stella in the North West Province, Team Rhide SA is ready to tackle the Dakar Challenge that takes place in conjunction with the "Toyota Botswana 1000 Desert Race" this coming weekend. All three Team Rhide SA quad riders scored completed the most recent national off-road event and their results included a race victory and two more podium positions.
Team Rhide SA’s Brian Baragwanath, Hannes Saaijman and Ted Barbier all completed the Vryburg Stella 400 national off-road with Baragwanath winning the quad category – this was his fourth consecutive overall and Q1 Class Championship victory in the national series this season – while Saaijman finished second in Q2 after overcoming numerous problems with fuses on his quad while Barbier, who competes in the Senior Class, finished the full 360 kilometer race in fifth place in his class.
Baragwanath, who has won the national off-road quad title and class championship before, has been leading the overall standings and Q1 Class Championship since his victory at the season opener "Diamond Route 400" and has in the meantime also won the "Windsorton 400" (round two); the "BELL 400" (round three) and the recent event in the Kalahari to stretch his lead in the overall standings to 24 points.
Saaijman, who has also finished on the overall podium this year, has regained his lead in the Q2 standings and is now fifth overall while consistent results ensured Barbier his podium position in the Senior Class Championship where he is currently third. The team’s representative in the motorcycle category, Ruan Roberts, was injured and did not participate in the Vryburg Stella 400.
All three quad riders have their eye on an entry into the 2015 Dakar Rally. It was recently announced that the Botswana Motorsport 1000 Desert Race, that takes place this weekend (27 to 29 June) in Botswana, will again form part of the worldwide Dakar Challenge where the winning entrant (be it a motorcycle OR a quad competitor) can win his entry fee for the 2015 Dakar Rally. Baragwanath finished third overall in the recent Namaqua African Rally, a multi-stage roadbook navigational rally in the Western Cape, and his total prize money of R25 000 will go a long way to assist him financially. Both Saaijman and Barbier have also completed this six day event.
(Brett Cummings, who has won the 2012 Dakar Challenge at the Australasian Safari and received an entry for the 2013 Dakar Rally – he has also completed the 2014 Dakar Rally in the motorcycle category earlier this year – has won the event in the Western Cape.)
Team Rhide SA – the name "Rhide" has been derived from the word "rhino" as the aim of the team is to contribute to Rhino Poaching Awareness – aims to enter the quad category of the 2015 Dakar Rally. Entries for this event have already opened and the organisers (ASO) will again only accept a limited amount of entries in the quad category. A free entry into this event will ensure this team’s foot in the door of this gruelling event that will take place from 4 to 17 January 2015 in South America. All three riders are busy with the development of their Yamaha Raptor 700 quads as they will enter the ‘Dakar’ with these powerful four-wheelers.
The team will do the necessary documentation for their participation in the Botswana Motorsport 1000 Desert Race and Dakar Challenge on Friday (27 June) at the Jwaneng Showgrounds. Quad competitors will tackle the race on both days – Saturday (28 June) and Sunday (29 June) – behind the motorcycle riders and will have completed a total race distance of almost 850 kilometers.
2014/06/26 | 18:51 CET | ARTICLE: MR/HS/THIART