Competing as a “Wild Card” entry in the 2nd round of the 2011 FIM AFRICA Southern Off Road Championships, Brother Broadlink KTM team rider Darryl Curtis (300 KTM) came out “Top Dog” at the Tom Reeve Memorial Off Road event held at Dorvic Farm, Mazabuka, Zambia on Saturday 26th March.
The South African beat Botswana rider, Ross Branch (Naledi Motors Wesbank Racing) by the narrowest of margins of 1minute 10 seconds after 4hrs of close racing. Third overall went to local man David Reeve (CB Racing 450 Husaberg), who despite local knowledge could not quite match the pace of the South African based professionals, coming home some 9 minutes adrift at the end of the day.
The second “wild card”, Brother Broadlink KTM Team member, South African based Swiss rider, Lionel Seydoux, was not so fortunate, succumbing to a rear wheel puncture on the 3rd of the 4 lap race, which effectively halted his challenge whilst vying for 3rd place with Branch and Reeve.
Commenting on his win, Curtis complimented the organizers on putting on an enjoyable yet challenging route, whilst Branch despite finishing second, declared the event “the best off road race I have ever done”.
Reeve was also complimentary of the other riders, despite relinquishing the trophy that was donated in memory of his late father Tom, “It was really great to have the likes of Darryl, Ross and Lionel up here and it certainly makes all the effort of putting on this event worthwhile. Sure, I would have liked to have made it a hat-trick of wins for my dad, but if anyone else is going to win this trophy then I have no problems with it being Darryl!!! I rode as hard as I could today, my ‘Berg was faultless and I was beaten by a better rider. I am still in touch with Ross in the SORC series, so that is good and I can’t wait for the next round in Zimbabwe!!”
Despite not competing in the full FIM AFRICA series, Curtis, always the sportsman, was satisfied with his win and commented; “I have raced up here in Zambia several times now and it is always a great route, lots of fun with great hospitality and for sure I would like to be able to come back and defend this trophy next year. Ross gave me a good run today and it was not easy out there. Full marks to the guys who set the route, it had everything; technical climbs, faster flowing stages, very enjoyable”
Behind this leading group there were also some credible performances from the regular SORC Riders.
In the big bike, B2 class, it was veteran local man Marcus Pieterse (250 KTM) who came home in 4th place behind the “big guns”; a result which keeps up his challenge in the series.
In the B1 class for smaller bikes, Botswana rider David Kidd (250 Kawasaki) took the spoils, whilst local honour was upheld by Lance Higgins (450 Honda) who dominated the Quad class from another local man, Carsten Kruger (525 KTM). Higgins now moves to the head of the points standings in the Quad class after the first two rounds of the series.
In the Master’s Class Neil Gailey came out on top after having to have several attempts on some of the more technical climbs and declared to be “feeling his age” at the finish!!
The next event takes place in Zimbabwe at the end of May, which is set be another cracking race if last year’s event is anything to go by. With the regular riders looking to add to their points tally, plus a sprinkling of fast local riders looking to spoil their fun, an exciting days racing is in prospect.
|Author: Gillian Dykes