Visser and Badenhorst lead from start to finish
- Woolridge and Huxtable claim third place
- Ford secures manufactures trophy
PRETORIA, South Africa, 03 September, 2012 – Team Ford Racing left this weekend’s 4×4 Mega World 400 atCarnivalCity victorious with Chris Visser and Japie Badenhorst dominating proceedings to take their second win of the season. Lance Woolridge and Ward Huxtable in the sister SP Ford Ranger rose to the occasion, securing a third place finish for the sixth round of the Absa Off Road Championship.
Visser and Badenhorst came in to the finish line two minutes and 39 seconds ahead of their nearest rivals, after securing pole position in Friday’s prologue session and leading from start to finish. The victory brings the pair back within reach of the championship honours.
“Timing couldn’t be more perfect,” commented Visser after the race. “We’ve had a difficult run of late but with two races left we are now suddenly back in the hunt. We’ve always felt we had the pace but small niggles have held us back. If we can have a clean run in the coming races the title is very much a possibility.”
With dry and dusty conditions prevailing over the weekend, the pair’s dominance of Friday’s prologue session went a long way to ensuring a successful outing in Saturday’s race.
“It really hit home for us that the prologue is 50% of the race. We went out with the intention of securing a strong starting position and that really set us up for the entire race. We pushed hard right from the beginning of the main race although we were hampered by a damaged rear anti-roll bar, which broke 10km from the start. We were able to build up a nice lead and control the race from the front. It was a fantastic feeling and I’d like to dedicate this win to my mother who is celebrating her birthday,” added Visser.
The event marked the second time this season the two Ford Racing crews finished on the podium with Woolridge and Huxtable also enjoying a strong comeback having struggled with their own difficulties of late.
“The race was challenging. It was really dusty and there were a lot of casualties, but the team did a great job, the car ran like clockwork and we were able to pick off the opposition and move up through the field to secure our second Carnival City podium,” said Lance Woolridge.
To round off a strong result for the team, Ford also walked away with the manufacturer’s award. Team Ford Racings podium finishes combined with strong Ford privateer results enabled Ford to secure the award.
“Prior to this event we had done a lot of work on the cars which included rigorous testing sessions. We have always known how fast the Rangers are but have had a string of small problems in previous events. This weekend it all came together and we were able to demonstrate the pace of the Ford Ranger. The team did a great job. It’s not easy to have both cars on the podium in such a competitive endurance sport. To win the manufacturer’s award as well was the cherry on top.” adds Team Manager Neil Woolridge. “It was an especially proud moment as we had a number of Ford staff, sponsors and media joining us for this event and they were able to celebrate the day’s results with us.”
Team Ford Racing’s efforts would not be possible without the support of its dedicated sponsors BP, Castrol, Innovation Group, Motorvia, Sign Solutions and Time Freight.