It was a Toyota Gazoo Race Week of the champions as several drivers and riders wrapped up titles on two and four wheels across the globe over the weekend. It was a particularly good weekend for Toyota though, as Sebastien Ogier and Henk Lategan added a respective World Rally and SA Cross Country Championship to Gazoo Racing’s World Endurance crown as they rounded off another triple crown for the team.
On the day that Lewis Hamilton dominated the first Qatar Grand Prix for Mercedes as he chases his eighth world title, closing down on championship leader, second on the day Max Verstappen’s Red Bull with Fernando Alonso third for Alpine, Toyota Gazoo rally heroes Sebastien Ogier and Julien Ingrassia did just that. The Toyota Yaris crew beat teammate Elfyn Evans to win Rally Monza and clinch their eighth World Rally Championship in their swansong before retiring from the sport.
Lategan’s Hilux takes third SACC title
Toyota Gazoo Racing’s cup flowed over when Henk Lategan and Brett Cummings stormed Parys 400 victory to clinch their third SA Production Cross Country title on the trot in their Gazoo Hilux. They were second home behind teammates Giniel de Villiers and Dennis Murphy's new DKR Hilux T1+, which did not score toward the championship. So title rivals Lance Woolridge and Elvéne Vonk’s Ford Ranger were officially second from Shameer Variawa and Danie Stassen’s Gazoo Hilux.
Jason Venter and Jaco van Aardt’s Hilux was fourth, from Special Vehicle Champions, Lance Trethewey and Adriaan Roets on their Production class debut in a Century CR6, and Eben Basson and Gerhard Schutte’s Red-Lined VK56. Wors Prinsloo and Andre Vermeulen’s Ford Ranger won Class T, Boela Botes and Jay Pretorius ’s Porter took the Specials win and Peter Walter and Shaun de Villiers' Can-Am was the only Side by Side to finish a race of attrition.
In other national action, Tristan Purdon wrapped up both the South African MX1 and MX2 senior motocross titles in Pretoria. Grant Frerichs took the MX3 crown, Kayla Raaf is the ’21 SA Ladies and Joshua Mlimi the High School champion. Emmanuel Bako, Matthew Correia, Blade Tilley and Trenton Kretzman took the four Junior SA MX titles. KTM duo Purdon took another premier class double over Cameron Durow on the day, who did the 250cc MX2 double ahead of Purdon.
SA MX champions crowned in Pretoria
Husqvarna rider Grant Frerichs wrapped up the MX3 title with a double, as did Kayla Raaff on her Kawasaki in the Ladies. Jonathan Mlimi’s KTM likewise dominated 125, and Emmanuel Bako’s Husqvarna 85 cc Pro Mini. Matthew Correia’s KTM took the 85 cc Junior title behind Tyler Petersen, as Aiden Henley won but Blade Tilley's GasGas took the 65 title and Trenton Kretzmann’s Husqvarna followed Rayden Woolls’ GasGas home to clinch the 50cc crown.
Staying local, there were two regional karting races over the weekend. James Moore won DD2 at the Eastern Province Rotax Max round at Celso Scribante, while Caleb Moss took the Mini Max win and Dylan Bezuidenhout Bambino. And a Northern Regions Rok round raced at Vereeniging, where Joshua Coertze won KZ2 and Bjorn Roos KZ. Racing lass Taya van der Laan won OKJ and brother Troy took the Kid Rok win. Mahlori Mabunda won Mini Rok and Kayde Cornofsky Bambino.
In other international action, Shane van Gisbergen took the 2021 Aussie V8 Supercar title after the final race at Sydney Motorsport Park was declared due to bad weather. Van Gisbergen had already scored a remarkable recovery drive to win a wild, damp opening race for Holden.
Razgatlioglu is World Superbike champion.
Yamaha rider Toprak Razgatlioglu won the 2021 World Superbike title in a thrilling opening race in Indonesia, when he tailed title rival Jonathan Rea’s Kawasaki home second in race 1. Rea then did the double in an epic finale from Scott Redding’s Ducati with Razgatlioglu fourth. Raffaele de la Rosa’s Kawasaki took the opening WSS race and Jacques Cluzel’s Yamaha the second as SA lad Steven Odendaal had a tough weekend but retained his title second.