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2005Zimbabwe_pressrelease
PRESS RELEASE ON RALLY STAGES FOR 2005 DUNLOP ZIMBABWE RALLY
       
         

1 - SS 2

Nest
11.20kms
2 - SS 3
Short
4.20kms
3 - SS 4 and SS 9
Kent
11.91kms
4 - SS 6 and SS 10
Dad's Mine
18.89kms
5 - SS 11
Mixa
21.20kms
Brunch at Norton Country Club
6 - SS 5 and SS 8
Hunyani
17.10kms
7 - SS 7
Forest
58.34kms
8 - SS 13 and SS 18
Square Root
4.23kms
9 - SS 14 and SS 17
Duncan
13.44kms
10 - SS 15
Arnott
11.32kms
11 - SS 16
Hogs Loop
8.01kms
12 - SS 12
TT
10.08kms
13 - SS 19
Moto X
7.74kms

 

 

 

All competitors - Friday 27 May, 2005 13.00hrs
Meet at the control tower- Donnybrook Park - Arcturus Road.
SSS 1 and  SSS 20
Donnybrook
7.57kms
       
         
NO ZIMBABWEANS FINISH SA's TOTAL RALLY        
         

None of the three Zimbabwean entries in the recent Total Rally of South Africa was able to finish the event, which was won by South Africa's motor rallying legend Serge Damseaux.

The rally took place in northern South Africa earlier this month, with 59 vehicles starting and 20 finishing the gruelling three-day event. Three Zimbabweans joined the large group of South African entries, as well as other entrants from Zambia: Jess Watson and Dave Milner, Jamie Whyte and Phil Archenoul and Conrad Rautenbach and Pete Marsh.

       
         
Rautenbach and Marsh made a good start in their new Subaru Impreza and by the 18th stage were in third place overall and first in their class. Then disaster struck and they were out of the rally because of gearbox problems. This was a major disappointment, particularly as the pair was doing so well and had every chance of maintaining their strong position.        
         
Watson and Milner also withdrew because of technical problems, while Whyte and Archenoul went up to eighth place, but were disqualified because of an infringement relating to a brake calliper. This was highly frustrating for the two, and a disappointment for Zimbabwean hopes of a finisher in 2005.
This was Damseaux' 68th national rally win - a record for South Africa and an excitement shared with his co-driver Robert Paisley. Highest-placed non-South Africans in the rally were Richard Himmel and Adolf Botes of Namibia (fifth), while Zambia's Muna Singh and Dave Sihoka managed seventh place.
The Total Rally of South Africa is the second leg of the FIA African Rally Championship and the principal event on the South African rallying calendar. Next up on the FIA ARC is the 2005 Dunlop Zimbabwe Challenge Rally, which will be run from May 27 to 25 in and around Harare.
       
         
         
WATSON WINS THE CASTROL RALLY CROSS        
         

Jess Watson has won the opening motor rallying event of 2005, the Castrol Rallycross, taking the top honours from a good field of 20 entries at Donnybrook on Saturday.

He took first place overall and first place in class 4 (four-wheel drives and turbos) and became the first rally event winner of what promises to be a packed and exciting season for the sport. Second place overall went to Steve Attwell, while third place was taken by Jamie Whyte. Best time of the day came from Watson, who clocked 5 minutes 10 seconds in the final leg of the day.

       
         
In a Zimbabwean rallycross, three vehicles go out at a time on the specially-designed rally course around Donnybrook and fastest times count towards the finals at the end of the day. The course includes stretches on tar and gravel roads, most of the route being visible to spectators.
Shaun Whyte took first place in class 1 (1600 - 2000cc) while Darrin Keates won class 2 (2000cc and over - two-wheel drive only).
"This was a great start to our 2005 season and we thank Castrol Zimbabwe for coming in with the sponsorship for this highly spectator-friendly event<" said Craig Batten, chairman of Sables Motor Club, which oversees all motor rallying and main circuit racing in Harare. Next up will be the first rally of the eight-event 2005 Zim-Zam Series, scheduled for Saturday March 19. Planning is also now underway for the premier motorsport event of the year, the Dunlop Zimbabwe Challenge Rally, which will be run from Friday May 27 to Sunday May 29.
       
         
         
NEWS RELEASE  MAY 28 2005     RALLY FIRST Press Release        
         
Zimbabwe's Conrad Rautenbach took the lead on day one (Fri) of the 2005 Dunlop Zimbabwe Challenge Rally, steering his Subaru Impreza to the fastest time in the opening super special stage at Donnybrook in Harare.
He and co-driver Peter Marsh achieved a time of 5 minutes 28 seconds around the 7,5-kilometre tar and gravel course, snatching the lead from nearest rivals Jess Watson and Dave Milner, who came in with 5 minutes 29 seconds on the clock. Theirs was the closest rivalry of the day and saw Watson take second place overall.
       
         
Today (Sat) the action moves to Norton, where entrants spend the whole day on gravel roads in the farming area around the town. This route is likely to take its toll on the field and by sunset, when they return to Donnybrook for the overnight stop, the number of competitors is likely to be down.
A total of 21 vehicles started the Challenge when it was ceremonially flagged off by ‘Queen of Motorsport' Heather Israel and Dunlop works director Mike Walsh yesterday afternoon. Three vehicles failed to qualify for the start: those of Graham Fleming and Nicholas Berkau, Clayton Green and Malcolm Thornicroft and Ronald Parswell and Shirwin Evans.
       
         
Among the starters were the famed ‘rally chicks' from South Africa, sisters-in-law Lola and Megan Verlaque, last year's Challenge and FIA African Rally Championship winners Muna Singh and Dave Sihoka of Zambia, Namibia's Richard Himmel and Adolf Botes, Uganda's Riyaz Kurji and Sayed Kadri and two other Zambian teams - Paul Monge and Ray Thornicroft and Charles Kapya and Abel Nyakunzu.
Other top Zimbabwean names among the field include Jamie Whyte and Phil Archenoul, Richard Robinson and Colin Schreiber and Trevor Gilbert and Darrin Keates.
       
         
Day one consisted of a super special stage around Donnybrook, in which three vehicles at a time took on the challenging route aiming at fastest time of the day. A similar super special stage will close the event from mid-morning on Sunday, after today's Norton action and the early morning action on Sunday at Westgate Shopping Centre followed by a route through the Arcturus area.

Ahead of the Challenge Rally was a one-day meeting of officials from across Africa for the 2005 gathering of the Confederation of African Motor Sports, headed by Surinder Thatthi of Kenya.
       
         
         
NEWS RELEASE  MAY 28 2005    SECOND Press Release        
         

Zimbabwe's Conrad Rautenbach retained his dominance of the 2005 Dunlop Zimbabwe Challenge Rally on day two of the event, consistently leading the pack and ending the day with a three-and-a-half-minute lead over nearest rivals Jess Watson and Dave Milner.

Rautenbach and navigator Peter Marsh enjoyed a steady lead throughout the day in their Subaru Impreza and now hope for a repeat of this on the third and final day. The second day saw the action move from Harare's Donnybrook Park to the Norton farming area west of the capital, where nine stages were run, mainly on gravel farm roads. By sunset the rally was back at Donnybrook, ending with a special stage around the home of Zimbabwean motorsport.
While all went well for Rautenbach and Marsh, the overall field was reduced from 21 to 15 with the falling out of six entrants, including FIA African Rally Championship hopeful Riyaz Kurji of Uganda and the only South African entry, ‘rally chicks' Lola and Megan Verlaque. Kurji and co-driver Sayed Kadri experienced a fire out in the bush near Norton, while gearbox problems hit the Verlaque sisters-in-law.

       
         
Zimbabweans who went out on day included Richard Robinson and Colin Schreiber (engine problems in their Toyota Corolla 1600), Trevor Gilbert and Darrin Keates (also engine problems in their Mazda Familia), Gordon Mackay and Amos Chamunokara (suspension problems with their Toyota Levin) and Steve Attwell and Mike Exton (engine problems with their Toyota Corolla 1600).        
         

The field of 15 moves to the immediate fringe of Harare's north-western suburbs for an early morning start on Sunday at Westgate Shopping Mall and then onto bush roads outside the city. A final super special stage at Donnybrook will end the event, scheduled to climax with a ceremonial finish at 1.30pm. Among the field are one Namibian team (Richard Himmel and Adolf Botes in their Subaru WRX Sti), three Zambian teams (Muna Singh and Dave Sihoka - Subaru Impreza; Paul Monge and Ray Thornicroft - Subaru Impreza; Charles Kapya and Abel Nyakunzu - Subaru Impreza) and 11 Zimbabweans. Singh and Sihoka are now the only FIA African Rally Championship participants in the rally.

Watson and Milner ended day two with their Mitsubishi Evo 6 in second place, three minutes and 31 seconds behind Rautenbach and Marsh, whiel fellow Zimbabweans Jamie Whyte and Phil Archenoul took third place in their Mitsubishi Evo 6, a further three minutes and 45 seconds behind Watson and Milner.

       
         
         
NEWS RELEASE   MAY 29 2005    FINISH Press Release        
         
Zimbabwean Conrad Rautenbach smashed all the records on Sunday as he took the champion's title in the 2005 Dunlop Zimbabwe Challenge Rally, the country's premier motorsport event.
At 20 years of age he became the youngest winner of the event in its 43-year history, as well as the youngest winner of an FIA African Rally Championship event. He is the first Zimbabwean to win the Challenge since 1998 and is also the first son of a former winner to take on the title - his father, Billy, having won it four times (1989, 1991, 1993 and 1995).
       
         
It was a splendid weekend for Rautenbach junior and his navigator, Pete Marsh. The pair took the lead in the opening super special stage at Donnybrook on Friday afternoon with a time of 5 minutes 28 seconds, and maintained that lead throughout the second day on the farm roads of the Norton area, ending the day a good 3 minutes 31 seconds clear of nearest rivals Jess Watson and Dave Milner. On day three that lead was strengthened in the special stage at Westgate Shopping Mall and on farm roads near Westgate. In the closing super special stage at Donnybrook he beat his own Friday time with the weekend's fastest super special stage time of 5 minutes 24 seconds, closing what has been his greatest achievement to date in his four years of rallying.
It was also a great weekend for Zimbabwe, with locals taking all three podium places - Jess Watson and Dave Milner in second place and Jamie Whyte and Phil Archenoul in third position. The highest-placed foreign competitors were Namibia's Richard Himmel and Adolf Botes (fourth), while 2004 Challenge champion Muna Singh of Zambia had to settle for fifth place with co-driver Dave Sihoka.
       
         

A total of 15 cars finished the rally, with 21 having started it on Friday. With the superrally rules in place a 16th car was also able to take to the Finish ramp - Steve Attwell and Mike Exton, who had restarted on day two after engine problems. The six entrants who fell out included FIA African Rally Championship hopefuls Riyaz Kurji of Uganda and the only South African entry, ‘rally chicks' Lola and Megan Verlaque. Kurji and co-driver Sayed Kadri experienced a fire out in the bush near Norton, while gearbox problems hit the Verlaque sisters-in-law.

Zimbabweans who went out on day two included Richard Robinson and Colin Schreiber (engine problems in their Toyota Corolla 1600), Trevor Gilbert and Darrin Keates (also engine problems in their Mazda Familia), Gordon Mackay and Amos Chamunokara (suspension problems with their Toyota Levin) and Steve Attwell and Mike Exton (engine problems with their Toyota Corolla 1600). Attwell and Exton later restarted and completed the event.

       
         
Speaking at Sunday night's prizegiving, Conrad Rautenbach heaped praise on the organisers of the event and its sponsors, Dunlop Zimbabwe, and said that with his experience in the FIA Junior World Rally Championship last year and in 2005 and with his experience in other FIA Africa Rally Championship he had seen a number of top-class events being staged, the Dunlop Zimbabwe Challenge ranking among the best of them.

"I'm proud to be a Zimbabwean," he said.
       
         
         
NEWS RELEASE   JUNE 9 2005     PROGRAMME Supersport Film Showing        
         
A 30-minute programme devoted entirely to the 2005 Dunlop Zimbabwe Challenge Rally will be screened on DStv's SuperSport 2 channel during the next few weeks, aimed at showing viewers across Africa the highlights of the event.

Filming and production of the programme was sponsored by Subaru Zimbabwe, which came to the aid of rally organisers when the original sponsors of the programme pulled out.
       
         
Arrangements were made to have flightings of the programme undertaken and SuperSport has advised there will be six screenings over a period of several weeks (all on SuperSport 2, which carries much of the motorsport coverage on SuperSport): Friday June 24 - 9.30pm; Saturday June 25 - 5.30am; Sunday June 26 - 5.30pm; Tuesday June 28 - 2am; Wednesday June 29 - 9am; Friday July 1 - 8am.

"We are delighted to be able to have a Challenge programme on SuperSport, so that people across the continent can enjoy highlights of the three-day event," said Craig Batten, chairman of Sables Motor Club.

"We thank Mike Stubbs and his colleagues for the Subaru sponsorship and also thank Minky Walters and her team here in Harare for arranging the flightings with SuperSport. Thanks, too, to Stuart Dawes and Mike Shallow for doing the filming and to MultiChoice Zimbabwe for helping promote viewership among DStv subscribers in Zimbabwe."
       
         

 

 
 
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