SA's Brian Baragwanath to spearhead Century Racing Dakar onslaught

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Brian Baragwanath and Leonard Cremer's with their Century Racing Dakar Rally vehicle.
Brian Baragwanath and Leonard Cremer's with their Century Racing Dakar Rally vehicle.

 • Ten locally built Century CR6 vehicles will be tackling the 2022 Dakar Rally.
 • Brian Baragwanath hopes to fight for a podium position at this year's event.
 • The 2022 Dakar Rally kicks off in Saudi Arabia on 1 January.
 • For motoring news, go to Wheels24.

South Africans Brian Baragwanath and Leonard Cremer will spearhead the Century Racing assault for a podium position when the 2022 Dakar Rally kicks off in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, on 1 January.

For ten years, Century Racing has been producing their own Rally Raid Cars near Johannesburg and is celebrating that feat with a ten car entry into the 2022 Dakar Rally.

Baragwanath made his Dakar debut in the quad category in 2015 and finished on the podium in that category in 2016.

In 2021 Baragwanath made the step up to the car category, and he made waves as he captured second place in the prologue and again several days later on a full-length stage. With seven top 10 finishes out of 12 stages in 2021, Baragwanath hopes to improve that performance as he takes on the world's best once more.

Brian Baragwanath isn't only a very quick driver, but he also knows the Century CR6 off by heart. During the year, he acts as Century Racings leading engineer and test driver and will be hoping to convert this unique skillset into a great result at the Dakar Rally.

2022 dakar rally
Brian Baragwanath and Leonard Cremer's Century Racing Dakar Rally vehicle.

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"Last year's Dakar was a great first outing for us. We were able to hold a good pace, and we were actually surprised by how well we were able to set our pace without taking too many risks. This year, we hope to do the same. We've improved the car even more, this year but so has everybody else. The development never stops, but we have made good improvements to the suspension. Design changes mean that we can now carry more spares, and we will also have a race truck following us, so we should be able to solve any issues if we have them much quicker this time around," said Baragwanath.

The locally built CR6 is a state of the art two-wheel drive racing vehicle, the culmination of 10-years of research and development. It has been fully designed from the ground up to tackle the harshest races in the world and has been subjected to hundreds of hours of testing.

Conforming to the FIA Dakar regulations for the Buggy Class, the CR6 is powered by a 7.0 litre Chevrolet V8 engine and utilises a six-speed sequential SADEV transmission. The CR6 has double wishbone suspension front and rear and runs on 37-inch tyres.

Despite its high tech nature, the team have been able to build this car locally at a fraction of the price of some of their European competitors and run the team on a much smaller budget, making their performance even more impressive.

2022 dakar rally
Brian Baragwanath and Leonard Cremer's Century Racing Dakar Rally vehicle.

"It'll be Century Racing's tenth year of the Dakar, and as a small company, we hope to make waves in the history books. If it's not me, then at least one of the other drivers. I worked really hard personally all year long in a lot of the development. We were always at the test track, always looking for ways to go faster. I hope it pays off this year," concluded Baragwanath.

The ten car Century racing team includes the following pairings:

1. Brian Baragwanath/ Leonard Cremer #230 
2. Chris Visser / Rodney Burke #253
3. Ernest Roberts / Henry Köhne #286 
4. Schalk Burger / Henk Janse van Vuuren #271 
5. Marcelo Gastaldi / Cadu Sachs #278
6. Mathieu Serradori / Loïc Minaudier #212 
7. Alexandre Leroy / Nicolas Delangue #250 
8. Oscar Fuertes Aldanondo / Diego Vallejo #249 
9. Jesús Caleja / Eduardo Blanco #256
10. Tim Coronel / Tom Coronel  #247 

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