Hans Weijs Jnr and Björn Degandt rallied their Volkswagen Sasolracing Polo S2000 to victory at Bela-Bela to finish the 2014 national rally season on a high note – claiming second place overall for the season in the process. In a very tough and demanding season finale that claimed many victims, the Volkswagen Sasolracing team also brought all three Volkswagen Sasolracing Polo S2000s home.
With Weijs and Degandt the overall rally winners, their teammates Henk Lategan and Barry White crossed the finish line for fourth place while Gugu Zulu and Carl Peskin rounded out the top five finishers for the event, with Zulu and Peskin fifth and Lategan and White sixth overall for the season.
“This is a fitting end to the season for the Volkswagen Sasolracing team,” says Mike Rowe, head of Volkswagen Motorsport. “It has been a fight for the Volkswagen Sasolracing S2000 Polos out on the stages this event, trading stage times with our competitors, at our most competitive level. We will be looking to starting the 2015 season on the same note.”
The Bela-Bela Motor Rally marks the fifth occasion during the eight-round 2014 national championship that Weijs and Degandt have finished on the podium, with the season finale their best podium result this year.
“I like technical stages and we were involved in a good fight at this event,” says Weijs. “This was a good rally for us, we pushed hard but it was very important to finish here in Bela-Bela, in order to claim second overall in the championship. We had to pace ourselves very carefully and keep the overall goal in mind.”
Lategan and White worked hard throughout the event but had to deal with a number of difficulties that kept them on their toes.
“We had some technical niggles throughout this event,” says Lategan. “Despite the problems, the results for the team are a morale booster and we produced a good result, a strong end to the season and one we can be happy with.”
Zulu and Peskin brought their Volkswagen Sasolracing S2000 Polo home in fifth, making it a top five finish for the whole Volkswagen Sasolracing team.
“The 2014 season has been a real challenge for us, we’ve had to work hard to stay in the fight,” says Zulu. “We started this final event well but the very loose surfaces here gave us some trouble, which saw us lose time against our rivals. Carl and I did post good stage results, within seconds of the other teams, but overall our time deficit cost us what could have been an even better result. A strong finish at this event – and for the season – means we start 2015 on a positive note and ready for the challenge.”
The Volkswagen Sasolracing team will enjoy a short break before the start of the 2015 SA National Rally Championship starts next year.
“We have overcome a number of challenges this year,” says Rowe. “There’s much work still to do, but we will be coming out strong for our 2015 campaign with the results achieved now forming a strong foundation for the new season.”
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