Red-Lined Motorsport is about to embark on its biggest challenge of its Southern African Cross Country racing season. The six-day Kalahari Rally is by far the longest and most challenging event on the local calendar, which the team sees as the perfect preparation for its Dakar plans into the future
“The 3700 km six-day Kalahari Rally is by far the longest cross-country race in Southern Africa,” team boss Terence Marsh explains. “With future Dakar participations in mind it provides us with the best training platform for both our drivers and navigators as well as our technical team.
“This endurance event brings in all the driving, navigational and logistical challenges of the Dakar and right here in our own backyard. “It’s a priceless opportunity for our guys to experience a real-world Rally Raid adventure right here in South Africa without having to incur the huge expense related to similar overseas events.
“As a team we are really looking forward to the adventure and the opportunity to create new memories after what has been a difficult lockdown period for all of us. “Our 20-man team is taking three of our latest Red-Lined VK56 Evo2s to the event which we will service from one of our fully equipped race trucks.”
The experienced pairing of Conrad Rautenbach and Riaan Greyling will be looking for a win aboard their Penta Motul branded VK56. “We had a good run in the recent Desert Race and we are hoping to build on that performance this week,” Conrad pointed out. “Now we need to repeat that for almost four times the distance if we want to win the Kalahari Rally. “It is a great challenge and one that we are so looking forward to — we can’t wait!"
Road to Dakar winner and team rookie Eben Basson together with the experienced Gerhard Schutte will be competing in their Red-Lined branded VK56 while Philip Botha and Roelof Janse van Vuren will be running for the first time in their newly acquired Penta Motor Group VK56. Both crews will use their longest and most challenging race to date to build on their cross-country basis and gain experience as they step up preparations to race Dakar 2023.
“We had an incredible run and result in the Desert race last time out, but that seems so long ago!” Eben Basson commented. “The Kalahari Rally will be my biggest challenge so far by quite some distance and I look forward to six straight days and nearly 4000 kilometres of adventure as we ramp up our preparations for the 2023 Dakar. “We also have our 100% finishing record that we would like to look after, so it’s going to be an exciting challenge. “Bring it on!”
“The Kalahari Rally is a big one for us,” Philip Botha confirmed. “Not only is this our first outing in our new Penta Motor Group Red-Lined VK56, but it’s also the biggest race we have ever tackled with many lessons to learn as we prepare to fulfil our dream of competing in the Dakar. “The entire team is counting sleeps for what is sure to be an incredible and rewarding adventure!”
"The Kalahari Rally is the perfect endurance event and training platform for us as a team as it will teach our guys how to race for six days back-to-back, to manage man and machine each day, just like it is at the Dakar,” team boss Marsh concluded. “Those are all aspects our one and two-day local races unfortunately do not allow us within our National Championship, but the Kalahari Rally has it all.”
*Red-Lined Motorsport Adventures competes with premium strategic partners, the Penta Motor Group, BFGoodrich, Motul, Dragon Energy, Jonnesway Tools, Expand a Sign and Wheel Collision.