The MIDAS touch

Date: 2017-08-07  | Viewed: 635 | By: Joe Dreyer -

The first Midas Tzaneen Rally went off without a hitch this past weekend. Hundreds of spectators were attracted to the sounds of the roaring speedsters as they navigated their way through well plotted stages in and around Tzaneen on Friday evening and the following Saturday. Arguably the highlight for many was the final stage through the centre of town on Saturday afternoon.

Of the 27 vehicles who entered, only nine did not make it to the finish line. On Friday evening there were three crashes which included veteran driver, Eddie Simpson and his navigator, Marco Lottering in their famous Opel Corsa. The vehicle was repaired and the following day the duo re-entered the race.

For most of the spectators, the inclusion of a new “F” Class provided some adrenaline pumping viewing as the two Maverick vehicles came screaming over the tarmac under the R71. The Maverick class resembles the traditional Sand Master vehicles who are notoriously quick and nimble. One of the Mavericks took the overall first place at this inaugural race. The team of Nico Du Randt and JG Klassen were quickest through all eight  of the stages and clocked the overall winning time of 01:13:39 to take home gold.

Tzaneen’s Louis Menge navigated for seasoned Secunda-based driver, Natie Booysen in their 1968 1600 Ford Escourt and despite being the smallest of the classes (D Class), managed a fantastic fourth place overall with their time of 01:15:37. They were the only Ford in the line up to finish the event and they managed to do it 20 seconds faster than one of the Mavericks and less than two minutes behind the Subaru team who took second place.  

According to the event organizers, the 27 entrants they received from as far afield as Gauteng, far exceeded their expectations and has thus paved the way for the future of the Midas Tzaneen Rally. “Thank you to Hennie Smit of Midas Tzaneen who were our main sponsors for this event and who came on board at the last minute to make it happen,” said Louis Menge, one of the organizers of the event. “A very special word of thanks also to Braam Moster of Merensky Holdings who made their land available to us for the various stages. Without your support we would not have had all the exciting stages around the dam, the canal and Greystone.”

Menge also extended a heartfelt thanks to all their sponsors for making the event a success. BB Motors Tzaneen, NTT Toyota, NTT Isuzu, Autobar Fitment Centre, Hella, Motormaster, Blue Dot Printers, BF Distributors, Letaba Panelbeaters, Tiger Wheel and Tyre, Crawdaddy’s, Hotel@Tzaneen, Key Shop, Afri Supreme Car Wash, EMS Tzaneen, SAPS Search and Rescue, Offroad Search and Rescue, S&J Auto and the Greater Tzaneen Municipality.

Written by:

Joe Dreyer