RALLY cars are heading towards Nelson Mandela Bay for participation in round four of the South African National Rally Championship, which this weekend will start and finish at Baywest Mall. The event formerly known as the Volkswagen Algoa National Rally, dates back to 1983, where none other than Sarel van der Merwe took the inaugural win in hisAudi Quattro. The past winners list of the event includes multiple South African Champions. The pedigree of this event is of such a nature that in the 36 years that the event has run, only two competitors have stood on the top step who have not won the South African Championship title. That says a lot of the challenges that faces the crews.This year the Algoa Rally Club is proud to announce that Baywest Mall has stepped up their partnership and have claimed the event title, thus will be known as the Baywest National Rally. Spectator friendly drifting stage The teams can look forward to the popular Jachtvakte stage near the VW plant in Uitenhage which will be repeated. Thus bring along those camping chairs and umbrellas as the action will be non-stop from 14:00 until 17:30 tomorrow. This year’s rally will be boosted with a new spectator friendly stage run at the Baywest Mall tomorrow evening which will incorporate some spectacular handbrake drifting in the parking area before they head out on to the main tar track followed by the gravel section with the enormous jump. Saturday’s forest stages Saturday the rally action will move to the ever popular MTO Longmore forest stages. Like a timeless movie, it is the highlight on the South African Rally calendar to rally on stages like Culturama, Sinkdam and the PPC stage. Unofficial Kings of Longmore, Guy Botterill and Simon Vacy-Lyle have held the record for the fastest time in a two-wheel drive car for a number of years. Would this competition within a competition yield a new record or a new winner? Rally favourites participating Favourites in the R2N class must be Botterill and Vacy-Lyle who would be hoping to make it four out of four in their Toyota Gazoo Etios. Flying the Volkswagen flag and hoping for a win in the VW backyard is AC Potgieter and Nico Swartz.Making their debut in the R2N class will be local ARC competitors, Nick Davidson / Ashley Bezuidenhout and Riekus Schmidt / Sherilee Pieterse in their R2N specification cars. Also regular ARC competitors, Jacques du Toit/ Ronald Rens (aka team Bloemies) will be rejoining the R2N class along with regulars Chris Coertse / Greg Godrich, George Smallberger / Carolyn Swan. Making anotherappearance will be Matthew Vacy-Lyle / Schalk Van Heerden. Local rally teams The Local teams will have to keep a watchful eye out for Paulus Franken in the new Vivo GT Cup car. Franken and Hilton Auffray had a very successful debut run earlier in the year at the Cape Overberg Rally. The Vivo GT Cup class is set to form part of the 2020 SA Rally Championship.The sole Classic entry is in the form of local ARC participant and 2018 Classic Champion EtienneMalherbe / Raj Jutley in the Datsun 160U is set to entertain the crowds again with his wild sideways driving style.All the Local ARC competitors have come out in full force to boost the numbers ensuring a good healthy field of competitors. SA’s one and only school entry Also to be seen in action are the racers of Daniel Pienaar THS, the only school in South Africa to participate in motorsport. Michail Ellis / Pierre Bakkes, in their VW Polo, race in the S5 class whilst Edward McCarthy/Martin Kleingeld, in their VW Golf, will participate in the S1 class.Optimistically the organisers have targeted 40 entries for the first Baywest National Rally. Fun rally events at Baywest To help boost Baywest Mall’s first National rally, the public will be entertained with a hive of activities happening at Entrance 4. New activities includes the Bridge Street Breweries beer tent, Go Kart and Mini Moto bikes will be showing off their skill in a demonstration street circuit; Bushpig adventures will be taking the public on a 4x4 passenger ride experience; Pedal karts for the young and old will challenge those who have the need for speed; VW Motorsport will be having their take on Gymkhana driving to test your driving skills; and then International Aerobatic display by the Hella/ Redbull athlete Patrick Davidson will wow the crowds before the final Rally stage of the event.