With a busy international calendar of events, we bring you another feature-filled edition to feed your rally love. Inside you can read the latest on Andreas Mikkelsen’s “new” WRC co-driver, a look at the growth of the Rally America series, a preview of this weekend’s PMC Gauteng Rally in South Africa that is set to be a thriller, and we bring you a big review of the FIA ERC’s SATA Rally Azores. The beautiful island’s gravel roads gave competitors more than just a few headaches and kept rally fans on the edge of their seats with the nail-biting action. Another great exhibition of rally talent!
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Volkswagen Sasolracing’s 19-year old Henk Lategan left South Africa last week to contest the FIA Europena Rally Championship’s (ERC) Acropolis Rally in Greece. This rally takes place from Friday to Sunday, 28 – 30 March.
“The Acropolis Rally takes place on both gravel and tar,” says Lategan. “There is a very strong entry list and I’m expecting it will be a tough weekend, not just facing the top drivers and teams there, but also the unfamiliar stages.”
Lategan contested three international events last year, with his best result a fifth overall in Croatia. In preparation for the Acropolis Rally, part of the European Rally Championship, he will make a quick stop in Austria to spend some time testing with the BRR (Baumschlager Rallye & Racing).
“Competing in Europe can be very different to competing in South Africa,” says Lategan. “The road surfaces, the stage layouts and also the language can often be obstacles that need to be overcome. It certainly adds a different dimension to competing there.”
To this end, Lategan will be teamed with navigators experienced in competition in the European championship. For the Acropolis event his co-driver is Klaus Wicha, a German competitor with more than three decades of experience and one of the top professionals in his field. The pair will contest a Skoda Fabia S2000 in the RC2 class, a category which accounts for most of the entry list.
In celebration of M-Sport’s 50th completed R5 Ford Fiesta rally machine, we took a look at the future of this rallying class and what lies in store for competitors and fans alike, plus we also feature the first round of the always-exciting South African National Rally Championship – and this was no disappointment in terms of high drama and action action aplenty.
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