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ZULU RALLY SOUTH AFRICA 2007

RAUTENBACH AND SENIOR TRIUMPH FINISH SECOND OVERALL BUT 1ST ARC CREW - MUNA BENEFITS FROM SECOND PLACE IN ARC RESULTS BUT A LOWLY 19TH OVERALL

Conrad Rautenbach and David Senior held their own against the South African manufacturers  when he finished 2nd Overall in the Zulu Rally in South Africa 1:53 behind the winner. The event was won by Hergen Fekken and Pierre Arries in a VW Polo S2000 who led from start to finish.

Third overall was Serge Damseaux and Robert Paisley in a Toyota Runx S2000. The only other registered African Rally Championship contender to finish was Muna Singh and David Sihoka from Zambia who finished 18th Overall.

Lola and Megan Verlaque retired in Leg 1 with a broken front suspension but then joined under Super Rally but failed to finish when their car stopped on the final Liasion section coming back to Durban for the finish. This is the third time this year the girls have stopped on the final liasion section in the ARC. Other ARC contenders Jamie Whyte and Phil Archenoul retired with a blown engine

In a surprise turn of events the promoters of the event TSM withdrew the candidature of the rally from the WRC with only one week to go before the rally.

The ARC event was held together by a core team of the sporting side of the organisation who had to scale down their efforts to run a very well organised event almost to WRC standards. The event could easily have had a place in the 2008 WRC calendar.

It is a great shame that the promoters TSM embrassed South African motorsport and African continent with this withdrawal of WRC candidature at this late stage to undermine the efforts of the organising team, especially since Africa had pushed for and was confident of getting a WRC round next year.

The full ARC registered drivers results are:

1. Conrad Rautenbach/Peter Marsh (ZW/ZW) Subaru Impreza 2:59:59
2. Muna Singh / David Sihoka (Z / Z) Subaru Impreza 3:34:46

2007 ARC standings after Round 4 - Rwanda Mountian Gorilla Rally
DRIVERS
1. Conrad Rautenbach (Zimbabwe) 69 points
2. Hideaki Miyoshi (Japan) 44 points
3. Muna Singh (Zambia) 40 points
4. Asad Anwar (Kenya) 15 points
5. Patrick Emontspool (Belgium) 14 points
6. Lola Verlaque (South Africa) 7 points
7. Issa Mohamed (Tanzania) 6 points
8. Emmanuel Katto (Uganda) 5 points
9. Don Smith (Kenya) 2 points
10. Anwar Pandya (Tanzania) 1 point
10= Omar Bakressa (Tanzania) 1 point

NAVIGATORS
1. Peter Marsh (Zimbabwe) 53 points
2. Hakaru Ichino (Japan) 44 points
2=David Sihoka (Zambia) 44 points
4. Nicholas Patel (Kenya) 15 points
5. Benoit Daubie (Belgium) 14 points
6. Megan Verlaque (South Africa) 7 points
7. Awadh Bafadhil (Tanzania) 6 points
8. Moses Matovu (Uganda) 5 points
9. Maisam Fazal (Tanzania) 1 point

MANUFACTURERS
1. Subaru 73 points
2. Mitsubishi 44 points

26/27 MAY 2007
Partial Unofficial Classifications
Pos Car Driver / Co-Driver ZA
CL
ARC
CL
CAR SS
Done
SS 1
11.38
SS 2
30.19
SS 3
22.79
SS 4
30.19
SS 5
22.79
SS 6
11.38
Pen Diff Total
1 5 Hergen Fekken
Pierre Arries
S2000 N
4
Volkswagen
Polo
6 06:54 27:29 13:06 26:12 12:49 06:46 00:00   93:16
2 151 Conrad Rautenbach
David Senior
0 N
4
Subaru
Impreza
6 06:59 27:03 12:59 26:58 12:50 06:47 00:00 00:20 93:36
3 2 Serge Damseaux
Robert Paisley
S2000 N
4
Toyota
RunX RSi
6 06:55 27:31 13:22 26:22 12:49 06:35 00:20 00:18 93:54
4 3 Jan Habig
Douglas Judd
S2000 N
4
Volkswagen
Polo
6 06:51 27:25 13:00 26:53 13:07 06:40 00:00 00:02 93:56
5 4 Jean-Pierre Damseaux
Cobus Vrey
S2000 N
4
Toyota
RunX
6 07:09 27:21 13:34 26:35 13:22 06:44 00:10 00:59 94:55
6 1 Enzo Kuun
Guy Hodgson
S2000 N
4
Volkswagen
Polo
6 06:57 26:44 13:06 26:40 13:37 06:38 01:30 00:17 95:12
7 24 Mark Cronje
Chris Birkin
A
7
S
3
Toyota
RunX RSi
6 07:04 28:14 13:38 27:47 13:28 07:00 00:00 01:59 97:11
8 62 Visser du Plessis
Dave Lewkowicz
N
4
N
4
Subaru
WRX Sti
6 07:15 28:43 13:53 28:16 13:39 07:13 00:00 01:48 98:59
9 9 Jon Williams
Douglas Williams
S2000 N
4
Volkswagen
Polo
6 06:59 28:06 13:33 27:18 13:13 06:52 03:00 00:02 99:01
10 93 Rodney Visagie
Arno La Grange
N
3
S
3
Toyota
RunX RSi
6 07:29 29:36 14:25 29:12 14:08 07:26 00:00 03:15 102:16
11 94 Kosta Koumantarakis
Barry White
N
3
S
3
Toyota
RunX
6 07:46 29:17 14:13 29:15 14:17 07:31 00:00 00:03 102:19
12 22 Chris de Wit
Patrick Yende
A
7
S
3
Toyota
RunX
6 07:25 29:37 14:31 28:57 14:35 07:23 00:00 00:09 102:28
13 97 Mohammed Moosa
Henry Dearlove
N
3
S
3
Toyota
RunX
6 07:35 29:53 14:25 29:08 14:12 07:19 00:00 00:04 102:32
14 92 Michael Houghton
Hennie Botes
N
3
S
3
Toyota
RunX RSi
6 07:35 29:29 14:54 30:09 14:29 07:39 0:00 01:43 104:15
15 77 Charl Wilken
Greg Godrich
N
4
N
4
Subaru
Impreza Sti
6 06:57 30:56 17:42 28:02 13:25 06:52 00:50 00:29 104:44
16 28 Adrian Karth
Des de Fortier
A
7
S
3
Volkswagen
Golf 4
6 07:32 29:38 15:02 28:57 14:14 07:40 03:10 01:29 106:13
17 41 Eugene Lourens
Derek Jacobs
A
6
S
3
Toyota
Conquest
6 08:11 28:45 15:24 31:02 14:47 07:56 00:10 00:02 106:15
18 43 Craig Trott
Carolyn Swan
A
6
S
3
Toyota
RunX
6 07:29 30:09 14:44 30:31 15:47 07:38 00:00 00:03 106:18
19 32 Theuns Joubert
Lourens du Plessis
A
7
S
3
Volkswagen
Polo
6 07:35 29:34 15:10 29:38 14:41 07:28 03:10 00:58 107:16
20 121 Gugu Zulu
Carl Peskin
A
5
S
3
Volkswagen
Golf
6 07:44 29:57 19:05 29:54 14:24 07:42 00:10 01:40 108:56
21 125 Tjaart Conradie
Elvene Coetzee
A
5
S
3
Toyota
Tazz 2000
6 08:02 30:57 15:11 30:14 15:04 08:05 02:30 01:07 110:03
22 103 Ettienne du Toit
Patrick Vermaak
N
2
S
3
Toyota
Corolla RXi
6 07:55 32:38 15:51 31:11 15:17 07:51 00:00 00:40 110:43
23 81 Richard Vaughan
Natasha Vaughan
N
4
N
4
Mitsubishi
Lancer
6 07:25 29:16 14:26 38:50 14:24 07:30 02:10 03:18 114:01
24 126 Vusi Mabanga
Danie Strijdom
A
5
S
3
Toyota
Tazz
6 08:36 32:14 15:51 32:51 16:17 08:40 00:40 01:08 115:09
25 46 Stevan Wilken
Gert Nienaber
A
6
S
3
Volkswagen
Polo
6 25:35 29:47 14:24 29:17 15:01 07:33 02:00 08:28 123:37
26 150 Muna Singh
Dave Sihoka
0 N
4
Subaru
Impreza
6 07:24 44:44 14:30 29:14 15:30 07:30 11:10 06:25 130:02


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ZULU RALLY SOUTH AFRICA 2007 - A CALLING FOR WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP

Zulu Rally South Africa is an FIA observed bid event to host a round of the World Rally Championship (WRC). The event attracts competitors from not only the South African national championship, being round 3 of the Sasol SA National Rally Championship, but forms a round of the FIA Africa championship as well.

Staged in Durban, KwaZulu-Natal, the terrain and atmosphere provides a quintessentially African feel to the event. And since the Safari Rally in Kenya was pulled off of the WRC Calendar, Topcar Sports Management (TSM) is adamant to prove that South Africa is not only capable of staging an international event of this calibre, but that it can surely only be referred to as a true global championship, if it involves the African Continent.

Zulu Rally 2007 takes place on from Friday 25 to Sunday 27 May, with the formalities of documentation and scrutineering at Centrum Park near the International Convention Centre (ICC), followed by the beachfront parade in the Bay of Plenty on day one. The rally action proper then occurs on the latter two days. The first leg takes to Sibaya and Inanda, while day two takes teams to the vicinity of Richmond, west of Pietermaritzburg.

Following a successful candidate event in 2006, South Africa has been tentatively placed on the World Rally Championship calendar for 2008. Along with South Africa, Cyprus and Poland are already listed but for now represent non-championship events. Subject to inspection in 2007, one of these three will be included in full capacity next year.

The organisers of Zulu Rally South Africa are confident that, after a good showing last year, the event holds all that the FIA delegates seek in offering a strictly controlled and logistically ideal rally that stands up to every international requirement of the WRC.

Zulu Rally South Africa has received the full backing of the South African Government's Department of Tourism and Sports and Recreation, the KwaZulu-Natal Provincial Government, Tourism KwaZulu-Natal, Durban Africa, the Ethekwini (Durban) Municipality, Motorsport South Africa and the entire rallying community.


WRC RELEVANCE & IMPORTANCE TO SOUTH AFRICA

Rallying has a strong tradition in Africa and South Africa. The loss of the Safari Rally from Kenya was a blow to African motorsport, being the continent's showcase event for the sport on the world stage. An event in South Africa will once again place the continent at the forefront of world rallying.

On a more general note, motorsport in South Africa has suffered tremendously as a result of the depreciation of the Rand against the US Dollar since the 1980s. Whereas in the past South Africa hosted Formula One, MotoGP, Superbike and other high profile international events, the country lost these events due to the high cost of staging them.

With the Rand currently showing signs of strength some of these events are, and will, return, but the fact remains that the rights fees for staging the events are substantial.

Rallying is different. The WRC is significantly more cost effective to stage than most other forms of motorsport. Being one of the world's most popular sports, an event in South Africa will showcase the country to a global television audience of 55-million people at a realistic and sustainable price.

Not only will a round of the WRC provide an amazing spectacle for rally fans in South Africa, but it will also bring numerous economic benefits to the country, the region in which the event is held, and local businesses.

The case for a round of the World Rally Championship to be staged in Africa, and particularly, South Africa, from a sporting and fully representative Championship point of view, is a powerful one.

Not only does the event offer world-class facilities, a variety of road surfaces, a unique pictorial backdrop, and a relatively low cost destination, but also South Africa is the gateway to Africa for the motor industry. This can be seen by the regular, and ever increasing, multi-million dollar investment in assembly facilities, and the relatively large and fast growing market (both in South Africa and Africa as a whole).

Let us also not forget the importance of a WRC event in assisting the country to uplift the less fortunate sectors of the community. Large sporting events such as a WRC round result in much needed tourist spend, which has a direct economic benefit for the communities in terms of direct and indirect jobs, and therefore income opportunities.

For teams, sponsors and other stakeholders, the importance of hosting a round of the WRC in South Africa is indisputable, and that is why there is a massive, national team effort now fully applied to make the World Rally Championship Zulu Rally South Africa, a reality.

Summary:

The objectives of hosting a WRC event in South Africa are:
1. To return rallying to the African continent
2. To raise the profile of motorsport in general
3. To boost the discipline of motor rallying
4. To introduce new and previously disadvantaged people to the sport
5. To provide an inspiration and conduit for the development of local competitors to world class standards
6. To raise the profile of South Africa as a country
7. To boost tourism to South Africa over an extended period
8. To create employment
9. To showcase South Africa's ability to host high-profile international events
A round of the World Rally Championship in South Africa and Africa will, indeed, bring back the colour, adventure and magic back to what would then be once again considered a truly global WRC series.


WHAT EXACTLY WILL WRC MEAN TO SOUTH AFRICA?


The World Rally Championship delivers the greatest motorsport show on earth. It comprises 16 rounds staged in 16 different countries in vastly varying conditions, terrain, environment and cultures. From January to November, the World Rally Championship (WRC) blitzes the globe with unleashed turbocharged thunder that shakes the earth wherever the three days of each event unfold.

Dynamic, thrilling, international coverage on TV, in the press, over the air and on the Internet, together with huge spectator attendance figures, have placed the WRC on centre stage.

It is fast consolidating itself as one of the planet's premier sports entertainment brands, and certainly, it has always been the most demanding and challenging of motorsport competitions. The drivers are peerless, even when compared with the Formula One fraternity; the cars are purpose-built, powerful, turbo-charged, rugged four-wheel drive saloon vehicles backed by a technical 'army' numbering up to 60 highly-skilled personnel per team.

Each round is contested by two cars each from Citroen, Ford, Subaru, Škoda and Mitsubishi, plus entries from the Production Car World Rally Championship or Junior World Rally Championship series and an unlimited number of private and local entries. Running on either Pirelli or Michelin tyres, the show they put on is awesome.

Over 1 000-million TV viewers soak up the WRC action each year, while spectator attendance figures, in excess of 10 million are, as a series/event, second only to those of world cup soccer - but WRC happens EVERY year and not just every four years!

Now South Africa has been given the opportunity of joining the elite group of countries that host a round of the WRC each year. Should South Africa succeed with its WRC bid, immense all-round publicity, exposure and image benefits will accrue to Africa, South Africa, the province and city in and around which it takes place and the event's sponsoring companies. Further, South Africa will enjoy boosted business opportunities, an influx of revenue, and the creation of job opportunities, with the huge influx of the teams, officials, the media and spectators, for a period of not less than four days.

Government research shows that with the 2003 Rally Mexico, the paying 45 000 spectators, together with the WRC teams, media and officials, had an economic impact amounting to R71 - R77 million. In Argentina, spectator attendance topped the 1,3-million mark!

The Federation Internationale de L'Automobile (FIA) representative in SA, Motorsport SA, has granted Topcar Sports Management (TSM) the rights to bid for a round of the WRC in South Africa.

Before a WRC event is placed on the calendar, the FIA must observe and evaluate an event staged in the country to determine if the organisers and promoters are capable of hosting a world championship event to the highest standards. The norm is for at least two observed events to be held before the granting of a WRC round.

…And we sincerely hope you will enjoy South Africa's premier event as it launches us into the most interesting phase ever in local rallying history. We hope, also, that we can bank on your support and involvement with this major international sporting project. We are confident that the greatest motoring show on earth will soon be on its way to South Africa.


GRIPPING ROUTE REVEALED FOR ZULU RALLY SOUTH AFRICA 2007


Much of the positive feedback from competitors on Zulu Rally 2006 concerned the selection of special stages. Varied and demanding in their nature, excitement has been building with regard to the stages designated for the 2007 World Rally Championship bid instalment.

Whereas last year's two-day event was held over the Friday and Saturday of the rally weekend, this year will see South Africa move even closer to the requirements of the FIA, by staging the competitive days of the event on Saturday 26 and Sunday 27 May 2007.

Moreover, the introduction to this season's SASOL National Rally Championship is the use of pace-notes that is complimented by a DVD of the route that is viewed as a substitute to the recconisance. Zulu Rally will however allow teams to conduct an optional recce of the stages on Friday 25 May.

Zulu Rally South African 2007 comprises of five spectator friendly special stages that take to the Inanda region on day one and Richmond and surrounds on day two. These are split by the Msinsi and Anderson's Auxiliary service parks for the two days respectively. Further details concerning the landowners and spectating opportunities will be available shortly.




LANDOWNERS' INVALUABLE CONTRIBUTION TO ZULU RALLY SOUTH AFRICA 2007

It is often vastly underestimated how much the contribution of the landowners is, when it comes to the designation and mapping of rally stage and this valuable co-operation cannot be emphasised enough when it comes to the Zulu Rally South Africa 2007.

As the candidate event for inclusion on the 2008 FIA World Rally Championship (WRC) calendar, various generous landowners have agreed to let the rally run over their ground in both the Inanda and Richmond areas of KwaZulu-Natal.

The compact nature of the route, as per the economical international standard of repeating stages, has demanded the need for the all-important landowners to provide the terrain that forms an integral part of this World Championship bid event.

Day one in Inanda comprises of land supplied by Tongaat-Huletts Sugar for the first and last stages of the day, whilst government owned and will host stages two through five.

Day two in Richmond has demanded significantly more participation from independent landowners. Masonite (Africa) Limited, Mondi Paper, NCT Forestry Cooperation Limited (Greenhill) and Kyalami Farm, all comprise the final day's action.

Without the invaluable availability of land to host the level of special stages required for the FIA observed Zulu Rally South Africa 2007, the event would simply have no substance.

"We are extremely thankful to all the landowners who have very generously allowed us to use their land for Zulu Rally. The co-operation we have received has been brilliant and all of them are going out of their way to ensure that the roads are in world-class condition for the event. The variety of roads provided by the landowners offers us the opportunity to provide some of the best rally roads in the world to the competitors," said Zulu Rally clerk of the course, Richard Leeke.




INVALUABLE PARTNERS FOR ZULU RALLY SOUTH AFRICA 2007

In order to accomplish the ultimate goal of attaining an official place on the FIA World Rally Championship (WRC) calendar in 2008, Zulu Rally South Africa would not be able to achieve such a monumental feat without the support of its valued partners.

The organisation, hardware and logistics of such an endeavour demand the supply of a variety of products and services from the partners concerned. Nationwide Airlines has once again reaffirmed its backing of the event in providing not only comprehensive packages for supporters that wish to attend the event, but importantly, the logistics of travel between the organisers in Johannesburg and Durban, for the active planning of the rally.

Toyota South Africa has come on board for the 2007 edition as the official vehicle sponsor and has proved invaluable in the set-up of the route and all aspects pertaining to the preparation of the structure of the event. Moreover, their vehicles will prove vitally important when it comes to the actual running of the rally in terms of reconnaissance, marshal distribution and the transit of the FIA Observers and VIPs.

Kyocera copiers, fax machines and printers will handle the smooth running of Zulu Rally 2007 in virtually all aspects of communication, results and news distribution. As too is the case with Fujitsu-Siemens Computers that will cover the data related issues of scoring and of course, all media related demands. Hitachi Power Tools' contribution is fundamental in the on-the-ground set-up of the Rally.

Zulu Rally South Africa has received the full backing of the South African Government's Department of Tourism and Sports and Recreation, the KwaZulu-Natal Provincial Government, Tourism KwaZulu-Natal, Durban Africa, the Ethekwini (Durban) Municipality, Motorsport South Africa and the entire rallying community.

Zulu Rally South Africa is not only the candidate event for FIA WRC inclusion, but also round 5 of the FIA Africa Rally Championship and round 3 of the SASOL South African Rally Championship.





ACTION AND EXCITEMENT FOR ALL THAT ATTEND ZULU RALLY SOUTH AFRICA 2007


It is a common misconception that it's difficult to enjoy not only the spectating of high-powered rally cars bulleting through the stages, but also all of the festivities that go along with a motor rally. In a mammoth effort to illustrate that this is in fact rather untrue, Zulu Rally South Africa 2007 is out to prove that the role of an onlooker to the event is essentially simple, if you know the basic method: Who, what, where, when, why and how.

Firstly, it is essential to realise that the structure of the rally this year is based around a very similar compact stage design as any event on the FIA World Rally Championship calendar. There are a total of five physical stages, which are repeated, with 6 the first day in the areas of Inanda and Sibaya area's and 4 on the second day in Richmond on Saturday the 26th and Sunday the 26th May respectively. The spectator points have been allocated for not only their ease of access, but in a well-planned effort to get you as close to the fast-paced action as humanly possible.

Before preparing your excursion, always remember that the official programme and spectator guide will contain all information required to complete your plan to view the action, just the way you want to. It includes: directions to spectator points with corresponding maps and GPS coordinates, a time and distance schedule, indicating when the first car will arrive at each point, how to keep you and your friends and family safe, as well as interesting information on the teams and participants. Programmes and spectator guides will be readily available at the following places from Wednesday 23 May:

* Rally HQ - International Convention Centre (ICC, Durban)
* Centrum Service Park (opposite DEC, Durban
* Ceremonial Start - Durban Beachfront - Bay of Plenty (16:00 on Friday 25 May)
* Sibaya Casino
* Msinsi Resort Auxiliary Service Park.
* Andersons Auxiliary Service Park
* Mondi Rally Village (Richmond)
* Bulwer Park Service Station (159 Bulwer RD, Durban)
* CV Joint Specialists (348 Berg/ Hoosen Haffajee st, PMB)
* Village Road Motors BP (33 Village rd, Kloof)

The best place to begin your Zulu Rally South Africa experience will be at the ceremonial start, which takes place at the Bay of Plenty on the Durban beachfront at 18h00 on Friday 25 May.

From there the rally action commences on Saturday morning 26 May, where the cars will leave the overnight parc-ferme, which is in Centrum Park opposite the Durban Convention Centre (DEC), and head for the first stage at Sibaya to start at 07h50. This is followed by 4 stages in the Inanda region, with auxiliary service for repair of the cars, taking place at the Msinsi Resort.

Stage 1 is repeated as stage 6 (to end day 1), while stage 2 is repeated as stage 4 and stage 3 is repeated as stage 5. There are 7 riveting spectator points on Saturday. The competitors will then return to park-ferme overnight on Saturday in Durban at Centrum Park.

Day 2 in Richmond (Sunday 27 May) is centralised by the 'Andersons' Auxiliary service and kicks off at Stage 7, a new stage not ever used before, which is repeated as 9 and stage 8 is repeated as 10. There are 8 equally exciting spectator points on Sunday

Naturally, it is up to you to decide which of the points are ideal and all of these directions will be as per the spectator guide. However, you can look forward to the "Huletts Yump," in the Sibaya area, which is a fast crest over tarmac into a sweeping right hand bend. Great visibility on stage 2 and 4 will reveal a fast sweep left into a big "U" right, also at fast pace. The ideal point on stages 3 & 5 contains a very fast sweep left over a crest. Importantly and in addition here, there is a spectator point on the way to Hillcrest heading north, that is only accessible with a 4x4, which also provides awesome action from this vantage point.

Stage 7 & 9 provide a vast embankment for fantastic viewing with the rally cars flying by in an extremely fast sweep from right to left. And, finally, stage 8 & 10 contains the best viewing from the 'Mondi Rally Village' The rally Village will be located at the Mondi Greenhills forest station (just outside Richmond), where you will be able to see the cars in action for a surprisingly long time. There will also be refreshments on sale. A Mondi Information Centre is provided, so that Rally fans can get the most up-to-date information on the competitors progress in the event. The cars will have a compulsory stop here, which will again allow the public the chance to chat to their rally heroes.

The event will close with the podium finish and champagne on Sunday afternoon at 16h00 on the Durban Beach Front at Bay of Plenty.

Zulu Rally 2007 will produce an exhilarating experience for all that come out to join the action. The stages have been likened to Monte Carlo on gravel, New Zealand's flowing roads and a splendid uniqueness that is purely African. International visitors that have been exposed to the route are all of the opinion that our roads are better than many of the gravel events and on par with the best in the World Rally Championship

The infrastructure and facilities provided for Rally fans will be of a high standard and as good as anywhere found on the World Rally stage

It is important to note that spectators will be able to enjoy the Zulu Rally South Africa, round 3 of the SASOL South African Rally Championship, free of charge. So come on out for the time of your life…



ZULU RALLY 2007 TO UTILISE WRC TIMING SYSTEM

In an elementary effort to elevate Zulu Rally South Africa 2007 to a par with World Rally Championship standards, the event has procured the equipment and services of ISC-T, the primary tracking, stage timing and results systems of the FIA World Rally Championship.

In South Africa's bid to bring a round of the WRC to Durban, KwaZulu-Natal, tentatively designated for March 2008, ISC-T events co-ordinator Kevin Chaffer was brought out from the United Kingdom to conduct an extensive training course this past weekend (14/ 15 April 2007), for the stage commanders and their deputies that will participate on the event in May. Chaffer and his team are responsible for the mammoth task of transport, set-up and maintenance of this highly valuable equipment to all 16-rounds of the WRC.

The system training included the start and finish procedures that will apply to all the stages of the event. The efficient assembly, workings and disassembly of the equipment was the primary objective of the training schedule.

Naturally, a major emphasis was placed on understanding how the information is relayed to the scorers, media, website and general-public in real time, which is performed through VHF repeaters and Satellite tracking,

"The training session was excellent, well received and understood by all parties concerned. South African marshals are certainly up to international standard and the processes concerning the ISC-T system should go off without a glitch," said Chaffer.

"This is naturally a big step forward in interfacing with not only the competitors and safety officials, but also in the creation of public awareness through real-time access to results," said Chief Marshal Tony Norton. "The additional major development on this front is that it brings South Africa up to the precise level of any event on the WRC calendar and thus allows all that are directly involved in the operation of the system to understand what to expect at the WRC echelon," he concluded.

Clerk of the Course Richard Leeke is equally upbeat about this step, "As a fundamental of international standard rallying, it was crucial that Zulu Rally South Africa invest in the product and corresponding service of ISC-T. "With this aspect included in the 2007 edition, combined with certain specified improvements over last year, we are all confident that South Africa will proudly be able to call a round of the WRC their own…"

Zulu Rally South Africa 2007 - Press releases

Zulu Rally South Africa 2007, Africa's candidate event for inclusion in the 2008 FIA World Rally Championship, is largely regarded as an event not to be missed by a large majority of rally competitors. In addition to the esteemed status of FIA observation, it forms round 3 of the SASOL South African National Rally Championship and round 5 of the FIA Africa Rally Championship and has thus drawn teams of the highest calibre from the entire continent.

The 2007 edition will host a healthy field of 50 entries, seven of which are to contest the African championship and the remaining competitors, the tightly contested overall and class championships within the local championship. 

Topping the ARC competitor contingent is the devastatingly quick Zimbabwean Conrad Rautenbach in his N10 Prodrive Subaru Impreza STi.  The 20-year old junior World Rally Championship (J-WRC) driver, partnered by Britton David Senior, will be out for his fourth victory of the ARC season and no doubt be challenging for overall victory of the rally.

A further star attraction is that of Hideaki Miyshi and Hakaru Ichino, the pair will fly the Japanese flag in their Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9.

Zambians, and former ARC champions, Muna Singh and Dave Sihoka will also be challenging for honours in their Team Madison Subaru Impreza, while Ugandans Emmanuel Katto and Moses Matovu will be behind the wheel of their Emica Rally backed Subaru Impreza. 

Zimbabweans Jamie Whyte and Phil Archenoul will take their fight to the front armed with their Jialing Motorsport Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 8 with fellow countrymen Chase Attwell and Gareth Dawe also piloting a Mitsubishi Lancer. The "Rally Chicks," South African Lola and Megan Verlaque, piloting their Team Total Subaru Impreza STi, are the only team that are participating in both the local championship and ARC - and they will certainly be ones to look out for as they battle for their piece of the glory.

The ARC compliment of undeniably fast drivers will however have a handful in keeping to the pace of the local eight-car field of S2000 Machines from Toyota and Volkswagen. Veterans Serge Damseaux and Robert Paisley will lead the Castrol Toyota RunX S2000 attack, along with Johnny Gemmell and Peter Marsh.

From the BP Volkswagen camp, current champions Enzo Kuun and Guy Hodgeson are teamed up with veteran legends Jan Habig/ Douglas Judd and Hergen Fekken/ Pierre Arries in their trio of identical S2000 VW Polos. Kuun is two points adrift of Gemmell in the overall standings, so will be desperate for a solid finish on Zulu Rally. Up and coming youngster Jon Williams and his father Douglas, will take the fight to this highly competitive class in their Guma backed S2000 VW Polo

Defending N4 champions Nicholas Ryan/Schalk van Heerden in their Bosal/ Jonnesway Subaru Impreza WRX, will be fighting hard to beat the likes of Visser du Plessis/Dave Lewkowicz driving their Pirtek/ Kreepy Krauly Subaru Impreza WRX. Team Total Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9 pilots Fernando Rueda/ Gerhard Snyman will also do well to keep ahead of Charl Wilken (Konica Minolta Subaru Impreza STi), Paul Pfeiffer/ Cindi Harding (Mitsubishi Evo 6) and Richard and Natasha Vaughan (Mitsubishi Lancer).

Proudly flying the Toyota flag in class A7 are the Castrol Toyota pairing of Mark Cronje and Chris Birkin. They will undoubtedly be seeking class victory on Zulu Rally to make it a hat trick of  wins thus far in 2007.Team Total is represented in A7 by Chris de Wit and Patrick Yende , but they will have a hard time fighting off the super-fast SASOL backed Kobus Roos and Niel Fourie. Volkswagen representation in class A7 on Zulu Rally South Africa 2007 is equally ferocious. Adrian Karth/ Des de Fortier, Barry Grobbelaar/ Mike Burrows and local heroes Tony Ball/ Alan Bissett will all be driving Golf 4s, while Theuns Joubert/ Lourens du Plessis are driving their Polo.

Other teams that have been on a rampage thus far this season in the less powerful classes, are the likes of Steven Wilken/ Gert Nienaber (class A6 VW Polo), Michael Houghton and Hennie Botes (N3 Team Total Toyota RunX RSi), as well as Mohammed Moosa and Henry Dearlove (N3 Team Total RunX RSi). Etienne du Toit/ Patrick Vermaak (N2 Toyota Corolla RXi) and Gugu Zulu/Carl Peskin, Andre Cleenwerck/ Mark Irvine (class A5 BP VW Golfs) and of course, Claudio Piazza Musso and Greg Gericke (A5 SASOL Toyota Yaris)

Spectating Zulu Rally South Africa 2007
14 May 2007 by Steve Mearns
 

It is a common misconception that it's difficult to enjoy not only the spectating of high-powered rally cars bulleting through the stages, but also all of the festivities that go along with a motor rally. In a mammoth effort to illustrate that this is in fact rather untrue, Zulu Rally South Africa 2007 is out to prove that the role of an onlooker to the event is essentially simple, if you know the basic method: Who, what, where, when, why and how.

Firstly, it is essential to realise that the structure of the rally this year is based around a very similar compact stage design as any event on the FIA World Rally Championship calendar. There are a total of five physical stages, which are repeated, with 6 the first day in the areas of Inanda and Sibaya area's and 4 on the second day in Richmond on Saturday the 26th and Sunday the 26th May respectively. The spectator points have been allocated for not only their ease of access, but in a well-planned effort to get you as close to the fast-paced action as humanly possible.

Before preparing your excursion, always remember that the official programme and spectator guide will contain all information required to complete your plan to view the action, just the way you want to. It includes: directions to spectator points with corresponding maps and GPS coordinates, a time and distance schedule, indicating when the first car will arrive at each point, how to keep you and your friends and family safe, as well as interesting information on the teams and participants. Programmes and spectator guides will be readily available at the following places from Wednesday 23 May:

* Rally HQ - International Convention Centre (ICC, Durban)

* Centrum Service Park (opposite DEC, Durban

* Ceremonial Start - Durban Beachfront - Bay of Plenty (16:00 on Friday 25 May)

* Sibaya Casino

* Msinsi Resort Auxiliary Service Park.

* Andersons Auxiliary Service Park

* Mondi Rally Village (Richmond)

* Bulwer Park Service Station (159 Bulwer RD, Durban)

* CV Joint Specialists (348 Berg/ Hoosen Haffajee st, PMB)

* Village Road Motors BP (33 Village rd, Kloof)

The best place to begin your Zulu Rally South Africa experience will be at the ceremonial start, which takes place at the Bay of Plenty on the Durban beachfront at 18h00 on Friday 25 May.

From there the rally action commences on Saturday morning 26 May, where the cars will leave the overnight parc-ferme, which is in Centrum Park opposite the Durban Convention Centre (DEC), and head for the first stage at Sibaya to start at 07h50. This is followed by 4 stages in the Inanda region, with auxiliary service for repair of the cars, taking place at the Msinsi Resort.

Stage 1 is repeated as stage 6 (to end day 1), while stage 2 is repeated as stage 4 and stage 3 is repeated as stage 5. There are 7 riveting spectator points on Saturday. The competitors will then return to park-ferme overnight on Saturday in Durban at Centrum Park.

Day 2 in Richmond (Sunday 27 May) is centralised by the ‘Andersons' Auxiliary service and kicks off at Stage 7, a new stage not ever used before, which is repeated as 9 and stage 8 is repeated as 10.  There are 8 equally exciting spectator points on Sunday.

Naturally, it is up to you to decide which of the points are ideal and all of these directions will be as per the spectator guide. However, you can look forward to the "Huletts Yump," in the Sibaya area, which is a fast crest over tarmac into a sweeping right hand bend. Great visibility on stage 2 and 4 will reveal a fast sweep left into a big "U" right, also at fast pace. The ideal point on stages 3 & 5 contains a very fast sweep left over a crest. Importantly and in addition here, there is a spectator point on the way to Hillcrest heading north, that is only accessible with a 4x4, which also provides awesome action from this vantage point.

Stage 7 & 9 provide a vast embankment for fantastic viewing with the rally cars flying by in an extremely fast sweep from right to left. And, finally, stage 8 & 10 contains the best viewing from the ‘Mondi Rally Village' The rally Village will be located at the Mondi Greenhills forest station (just outside Richmond), where you will be able to see the cars in action for a surprisingly long time. There will also be refreshments on sale. A Mondi Information Centre is provided, so that Rally fans can get the most up-to-date information on the competitors progress in the event. The cars will have a compulsory stop here, which will again allow the public the chance to chat to their rally heroes.

The event will close with the podium finish and champagne on Sunday afternoon at 16h00 on the Durban Beach Front at Bay of Plenty.

Zulu Rally 2007 will produce an exhilarating experience for all that come out to join the action. The stages have been likened to Monte Carlo on gravel, New Zealand's flowing roads and a splendid uniqueness that is purely African. International visitors that have been exposed to the route are all of the opinion that our roads are better than many of the gravel events and on par with the best in the World Rally Championship.

The infrastructure and facilities provided for Rally fans will be of a high standard and as good as anywhere found on the World Rally stage.

It is important to note that spectators will be able to enjoy the Zulu Rally South Africa, round 3 of the SASOL South African Rally Championship, free of charge. So come on out for the time of your life...

 
 
 
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