Team Ford Racing’s Neil Woolridge and Kenny Skjoldhammer proved once again that they are the ones to watch in the 2008 ABSA Off Road Championship. The Class SP crew steered their Ford Ranger to second place over all and second place in class SP, at the Sun City 400 event closing the gap on championship rivals Duncan Vos and Ralph Pitchford (Nissan) who had a difficult weekend.

Woolridge and Skjoldhammer had a trouble free run finishing behind race winners Hannes Grobler and Juan Mohr (Nissan).

“Once again we had a fantastic run in the Ford Ranger,” says Woolridge. “We’ve been on the podium at every race this season and that consistency now sees us lying in a strong position in the Championship title fight.

“The Sun City event is known to be rough and rocky race and this year was no different. Once again the car was faultless and we were lucky to make it through without even a puncture.”

Mark Ferguson and Craig West also enjoyed a strong outing at Sun City. Piloting the sister SP Ford Ranger they came home in sixth place despite two punctures along the way.

“We lost a little bit of time with punctures,” explains Ferguson. “The competition is so close at the moment that you can’t afford to lose even two or three minutes along the way. But overall we’re very happy with our performance. This year is a steep learning curve for us but with each race we are gaining experience and starting to see the results of that.”

Reigning Class E Champions Jack Peckham and Lucio Santoro tried out their brand new 3.0 diesel Class E Ford Ranger for the first time. A sheered engine mounting halted their lead of more than 8 minutes on there first time out.

“We have some work ahead of us,” explains Peckham. “The truck is really quick and we will be taking a good look at set ups and other teething problems which is to be expected when taking a new racing truck out on a 400km route. We have a break now before the next event in Limpopo, allowing us additional testing time to iron out any problems.”

The next round of the ABSA Off Road Championship takes place in September in Limpopo, where the championship fight is likely to be closer than ever.

“We’re very upbeat ahead of the Limpopo 400,” continues team manager Woolridge. “This weekend’s results really worked in our favour and if we can maintain our current pace and reliability we’ll be a strong threat for this year’s championship title.

“The Ford Racing Team would like to thank all the Ford spectators who came out to cheer us this weekend. With Sun City in close proximity to the Ford factory in Pretoria we always enjoy a lot of support,” he concludes.

Team Ford Racing recognises the following sponsors for their commitment and belief in the team: Ford Motor Company of Southern Africa, Time Freight, Special Steels, Ferguson investments, Hugo’s Panel Shop – Pietermaritzburg, Eibach Springs, Sign Solutions and Donerre Dampers.