Off-road & Enduro South Africa victories for Ruan Roberts and Brian Baragwanath



Ruan Roberts

Ruan Roberts (Yamaha) claimed his second consecutive victory in the motorcycle category of the 2013 SA National Off-road Championship while quad rider, Brian Baragwanath (BB Motorsport Lonestar PEP Yamaha) added a third victory to his list of wins in the quad category this season when they won their respective categories at the BELL 400, the fifth round of the National Off-road Motorcycle and Quad Championship that took place outside Vryheid in KwaZulu-Natal this past weekend (20 July).

Both Roberts and Baragwanath took the lead early in a dry and dusty 360 kilometre race and kept it for the duration of the six loops to add more points to their overall standings as well as in the OR1 (Open Class) Championship (Roberts) and the Q1 Championship (quads).

In the motorcycle category, Kenny Gilbert (Proudly Bidvest Yamaha) survived a crash to finish second, just over four minutes behind Roberts with 19-year old Timmy Young (Kargo Racing Yamaha) scoring his best result of the season finishing third overall, just over a minute and a half behind Gilbert and winning the OR2 (250cc Class) Championship for the second time this year.

Young was followed by his team-mate, Michael Pentecost, who continued his clean sweep of OR3 (200cc) victories even though he had no fifth gear during the last lap. Nicholas Pienaar (C3 Roost KTM – OR1) rounded off the top five after he lost time due to tyre problems and Altus de Wet (Husqvarna Racing – OR1) had to settle for sixth place after he lost some positions crashing on the fifth loop. Dillon Inggs (Naledi Motors Wesbank Racing KTM) finished second in OR2 behind Young and was seventh overall. Three minutes and a few seconds separated Pentecost (fourth) from Inggs and the riders fought some tight battles. Jaycee Nienaber (Manhand Shimwells Yamaha) claimed the second place in OR3 and was eighth with Charan Moore (Stoneridge Honda) ninth and Louw Schmidt (Brother Broadlink KTM) rounding off the top ten and winning OR4 (Under 21) for the fourth time this season. He finished just seven seconds behind Moore.

Brian Baragwanath

On four wheels the field behind Baragwanath was a bit more stretched out with the overall leader and defending title holder, Jurie Meyer (Yamaha Support – Q1), who suffered from flu, finishing second, just over four minutes behind Baragwanath. Local KZN rider, John Aylward (Yamaha – Q1) from Kokstad rounded off the podium after a clean run. André du Plessis (Yamaha – Q1) was fourth with the 2012 Junior National Champion, Jaco Moller (Extreme ATV Tzaneen Yamaha – Q1) rounding off the top five. Damien Lee (Honda) was sixth and Rorke Millar (Can-Am Racing – Q1) finished seventh after experiencing brake problems. Before the BELL 400, a single point separated Millar from eighth-placed Freddie Taljaard (CHM Carriers Suzuki – Q1) – this situation will stay as it is with Millar finishing a mere 10 seconds ahead of Taljaard after racing for just over six hours.

Danie Senekal (Yamaha – Q1) claimed his second top 10 position – he was ninth with Mtubatuba’s Paul Chomse (PS Storm Racing Banshee) winning the Senior Class Championship and rounding off the top 10 albeit with a loose steering column. Chomse strengthened his lead in the Senior Class Championship and was followed in this class by Kobus Erasmus (Suzuki) – he finished 12th overall – and Durban rider, Harry Timmerman (Water Rite Racing Can-Am) who was 17th overall.

On two wheels two young KZN riders finished just outside the top 10 – enduro specialists, Wade Young (Husaberg Alfie Cox Racing) and Scott Bouverie (Brother Broadlink KTM) started way back (they have not competed in the national off-road series this season) and worked their way up to finish 11th (second in OR4) and 12th (third in OR3) respectively (only 19 seconds separated them). Another youngster, Tyron Miller (Brother Broadlink KTM) was 13th (third in OR2) while Marc Torlage (Proudly Bidvest Yamaha) finished 14th and JC de Bruin (Yamaha) fifteenth after he lost time and places on the penultimate lap when he crashed.

Pieter Holl (Bert Smith Racing Powered by RAD KTM) claimed his third victory in the Senior Class (bikes) and was followed by his team-mate, Kobus Jonck with Justin Broughton (KTM) third. Wayne Farmer (LCP Racing KTM) experienced engine problems and could not finish the race.

There was some bad luck for OR1 competitors Bollie van Rooyen (Brother Broadlink KTM) and the Webster brothers, Jonathan and Chris (Micks Motorcycles Yamaha). Van Rooyen fell and Jonathan crashed into the KTM and broke his wrist. Van Rooyen had to call it a day and could not finish a national off-road race for the first time in six years. Chris experienced engine problems.

Some of the quad riders who could not finish the race include Dino do Amaral (Factory Racing KTM) who fell on the last lap while he was in the top five; Jacques Struwig (Boesman Racing Suzuki) experienced mechanical problems while leading the Senior Class; the engine of Leonard dos Santos’s Suzuki let him down less than a kilometre into the race and Matthew Barnard (Team Sabcool KTM) experienced battery problems while in the top five.

Martin Poole (Yamaha) won the Master Class on two wheels and was followed by Jan Berning (Just Sell Properties KTM) and Mike da Silva (Yamaha). On four wheels newcomer George Twigge (Can-Am) beat former champion, Jurie Meyer Sr (Yamaha Support) by a mere 15 seconds with Tony dos Santos (Factory Racing Suzuki) third.

Four ladies – two on motorcycles and two on quads – finished the event with both the girls on the two-wheelers completing the full race distance (360 kilometres). After a race long battle Toni Jardine (Roost KTM) narrowly beat Taye Perry (Bert Smith Racing Powered by RAD KTM) in the motorcycle category – Jardine finished fourth in OR4 with Perry ninth in OR1.

On four wheels Adi du Plessis (Suzuki) added a second victory to her list when she beat the current leader, Liezel Barnard (Barnard Vervoer Can-Am) by just under three minutes. Chardri Monk (Thesens Generators KTM) crashed and dislocated her shoulder.

Ceegan Laubscher (Diamond Trailers Racing Yamaha) took his fist victory in the Silver Class Challenge (motorcycles) and was followed by Hein van Niekerk (Beta Racing Cayenne) and the current class leader, Mauritz Meiring (McGee Yamaha Lydenburg) who crashed early in the race. Berné Bester (NUTS Racing Century Civils Suzuki) was the winner of this class on four wheels – it was his third victory this season and he kept his class lead. Christiaan Nel (CHM Carriers Suzuki) was second  and Graham Howell (Evolution Racing Suzuki) third.

The sixth and penultimate round of the 2013 SA National Off-road Championship, the GOC Rysmierbult National Off-road, will take place on 10 August in the Ventersdorp / Carletonville area in the North West.

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