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Dakar Rally 2014: Toyota to start desert testing in the Namib in August.




Tough just got tougher as Toyota Motorsport South Africa announced a new look team to kick start their Dakar Rally campaign in preparation for the world’s toughest race in January 2014. Dakar champions Giniel de Villiers and Dirk von Zitzewitz will return for the 2014 race and this year they will be joined by Toyota racers Leeroy Poulter (driver) and navigator Rob Howie.

Construction of the first of two all-new racing Toyota Hilux 4x4s has commenced in Toyota Motorsport’s Barbecue Downs workshop near Kyalami. The Toyota Imperial South Africa Team will return to the Namib Desert near Walvis Bay at the beginning of August for four days of testing in the sand dunes with the 2013 Toyota Hilux in which Giniel de Villiers and Dirk von Zitzewitz finished second in this year’s Dakar Rally.

“The Hilux has shown its mettle in the past two Dakar rallies and have mounted a strong charge for the top of the podium. We believe the youthful energy of Leeroy, and the experience of Giniel will combine to make a strong team in 2014,” says Calvyn Hamman, Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing at Toyota South Africa Motors. “Know that you carry the hearts and hopes of all South Africans with you on the back of your Hilux!”

De Villiers and von Zitzewitz, winners of the Dakar Rally in 2009, will reunite for the first time since their heroics in South America in January to begin their preparations for their third Dakar together in the all-South African team and the locally-built and developed racing Toyota Hilux.

After finishing third in Toyota South Africa Motors’ first attempt at the world’s longest and toughest motorsport event in 2012 and second last year, the Toyota Imperial South Africa Team will attempt to win the iconic event in what would be a major coup for South African motorsport.

The team will again enjoy the backing of Toyota South Africa Motors and South African companies the Imperial Toyota Group, Duxbury Netgear, the Innovation Group and Toyota Financial Services.

“The Dakar Rally is a huge challenge and we must be realistic about our chances of winning,” said team principal Glyn Hall. “Just to complete the 8 500-kilometre route through two countries over 14 days, with its 13 timed special stages, is an achievement. We are very proud of our podium finishes in the last two events and we will be aiming to finish on the podium again. A win would be a great reward for the whole team and for its sponsors.”

Commenting on the new Dakar Hilux, Hall confirmed it would again feature independent rear suspension and would incorporate a number of changes designed to make it faster. “We will be taking into account everything we have learnt on the past two Dakars as well as looking at how we can obtain some more power.

“The rules require that you use a production engine from the manufacturer’s stable and while the 5-litre, normally aspirated V8 in our racing Hilux has done a great, trouble-free job to date, we are looking at ways we can be more competitive in terms of outright speed with our main rivals and their turbo-charged cars,” Hall added.

2013/07/30 | 22:19 CET | ARTICLE: MR/HS/JACKSON











Dakar Rally 2014: Nani Roma und Michel Périn win the legendary desert rally. | 20.01.2014 20:07 |




Dakar Rally 2014: Xavier Foj and Toyota achieves third place in T2 cars class. | 20.01.2014 19:56 |




Dakar Rally 2014: Honda Team HRC satisfied with 2014, begins work for 2015. | 20.01.2014 19:46 |




Dakar Rally 2014: GWM/Haval achieves another Top 10 position in Dakar 2014. | 20.01.2014 19:38 |




Dakar Rally 2014: Solid finish for Lucio Alvarez and new Ford Racing team. | 20.01.2014 19:32 |




Dakar Rally 2014: De Villiers and Dabrowski as 4th and 7th best Toyotas. | 19.01.2014 21:46 |




Dakar Rally 2014: 2013 winner Cyril Despres finishing fourth after tough race. | 19.01.2014 21:23 |




Dakar Rally 2014: Ronan Chabot and Gilles Pillot in fast finish in the Dakar. | 19.01.2014 21:14 |




Dakar Rally 2014: Team El Martillo Racing finished in their first Dakar Rally. | 19.01.2014 20:15 |




Dakar Rally 2014: Riwald Dakar Team crosses the finish line in Valparaiso. | 19.01.2014 20:01 |




Dakar Rally 2014 RESULTS: TRUCKS daily and overall after SS12 on Friday | 18.01.2014 00:45 |




Dakar Rally 2014 RESULTS: CARS daily and overall after SS12 on Friday | 18.01.2014 00:43 |




Dakar Rally 2014 RESULTS: BIKES daily and overall after SS12 on Friday | 18.01.2014 00:42 |




Dakar Rally 2014: Orlando Terranova celebrates his first stage win in SS11. | 17.01.2014 02:51 |




Dakar Rally 2014: Strong show from Argentine Alvarez in arid Atacama in SS11. | 17.01.2014 02:21 |




Dakar Rally 2014: Team HRC riders overcome long stage and maintain posis. | 17.01.2014 01:54 |




Dakar Rally 2014: Third stage victory for overall bikes leader Marc Coma. | 17.01.2014 01:47 |




Dakar Rally 2014: No surprises for Speedbrain team in Atacama stage 11. | 17.01.2014 01:41 |




Dakar Rally 2014 RESULTS: TRUCKS daily and overall after SS11 on Thursday | 17.01.2014 01:36 |




Dakar Rally 2014 RESULTS: CARS daily and overall after SS11 on Thursday | 17.01.2014 00:31 |




Dakar Rally 2014 RESULTS: BIKES daily and overall after SS11 on Thursday | 16.01.2014 23:25 |




Dakar Rally 2014: The tenth stage brought gold - Stagewin for Czech Loprais. | 16.01.2014 22:48 |




Dakar Rally 2014: Team Dessoude with the last two cars reached the finish SS10. | 16.01.2014 22:46 |




Dakar Rally 2014: Ford´s Alvarez - "We handled it well and did a good job". | 16.01.2014 22:42 |




Dakar Rally 2014: Carlos Sainz "I'm really disappointed to be out of the race". | 16.01.2014 21:17 |




Dakar Rally 2014: Robby Gordon and his HST Gordini 22nd after Stage 10. | 16.01.2014 20:32 |




Dakar Rally 2014: Great Wall Haval and Lavieille moves up after Stage 10. | 16.01.2014 20:27 |




Dakar Rally 2014: Iveco-pilot Gerard de Rooy still on the lead after SS10. | 16.01.2014 20:00 |




Dakar Rally 2014: Mini´s are leading 1-2-3, second stagewin for Al Attiyah. | 16.01.2014 01:55 |




Dakar Rally 2014 BLOG: Dongfeng Challenge heading forward to Antofagasta. | 16.01.2014 01:54 |




Dakar Rally 2014 RESULTS: TRUCKS daily and overall after SS10 Wednesday | 16.01.2014 00:29 |




Dakar Rally 2014: Spectacular double for Honda - Barreda still second overall. | 15.01.2014 23:40 |




Dakar Rally 2014: Bad luck for Speedbrain - Israel Esquerre out after crash. | 15.01.2014 23:37 |




Dakar Rally 2014: Coma continues to lead the Dakar after SS10 Antofagasta. | 15.01.2014 22:26 |




Dakar Rally 2014 RESULTS: CARS daily and overall after SS10 on Wednesday | 15.01.2014 21:52 |




Dakar Rally 2014 RESULTS: BIKES daily and overall after SS10 on Wednesday | 15.01.2014 21:23 |




Dakar Rally 2014 RESULTS: TRUCKS daily and overall after SS09 on Tuesday | 15.01.2014 01:16 |




Dakar Rally 2014 RESULTS: CARS daily and overall after SS09 on Tuesday | 14.01.2014 23:14 |




Dakar Rally 2014 RESULTS: BIKES daily and overall after SS09 on Tuesday | 14.01.2014 22:33 |




Dakar Rally 2014: Gerard De Rooy 2nd in SS08 with only a little loss of time. | 14.01.2014 22:31 |




















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