Volkswagen Sasolracing’s 19-year old Henk Lategan left South Africa on Friday, 21 March, to contest the 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 two 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) team this weekend.
“Competing in Europe can be very different to competing here 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.
“South Africans competing internationally is always good for our country,” says Mike Rowe, head of Volkswagen Motorsport. “It helps to keep our talented competitors up to the levels of international competition and serves to keep SA in the spotlight.Henk is going to be in strong company, this is a good measure for us to gauge his progress.”