Toyota Gazoo Racing's Botterill and Vacy-Lyle begin rally title defence

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Toyota Gazoo Racing. Image: Motorpress
Toyota Gazoo Racing. Image: Motorpress

• The opening rounds of the South African National Rally Championship take place in Secunda. 

• The season was delayed to the coronavirus pandemic. 

• The organisers decided to host the first two rounds on the same weekend. 

Defending South African rally champions, Guy Botterill and Simon Vacy-Lyle, are poised to start the defence of their title this weekend, as the South African National Rally championship gets under way in Secunda, Mpumalanga with the Lake Umuzi rally.

Organisiers opted to run rounds one and two on the same weekend due to lengthy delays suffered by the championship brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Botterill and Vacy-Lyle will compete in the newly-formed Class NRC 1 in 2020 with their R4 Etios rally car. This class caters for all four-wheel-drive rally cars, up to Class R4, including the older S2000 and N4 rally cars, which now become eligible to score points in the national championship again.

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Image: Motorpress

The action takes place on 11 and 12 September and will incorporate the first two rounds of the 2020 season, with each day of the rally representing a round in the championship. Different stages will be used over the two days.

"We are excited at the prospect of finally getting our season under way," Botterill said about the opening rally. 

"We’ve prepared our Toyota Etios meticulously, and recent shakedowns have shown that the car is ready to take on the new-look South African National Rally Championship."

Motorsport SA announced the event will be run under strict Covid-19 protocols and therefore no spectators will be allowed, but fans can follow the action via SA Rally's online channels. 

2020 NRC rounds

Round 1 and 2: Secunda, 11-12 September 

Round 3: Venue TBC, 17 October

Round 4 and 5: TracN4 Rally Dullstroom, 27 – 28 November

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