The first event in the Cooper Dust Series kicked of the national series of events in the Western Cape on the evening of 31 March going into 1 April. The midnight drive was a hard fought event where competitors had to work for every single point they got. Two navigation stages on back roads, 5 challenging obstacles and two trails to drive – all in the dark of night kept the 20 competitors that took part up all night. Literally. As the sun rose over the sleepy town of Hopefield, the final competitor completed the final trail and the winner could be announced.
Lorenzo Bruni in his FJ Cruiser is the first qualifier for the Cooper Dust Series Tankwa where he will be joined by Willie Mostert (Suzuki Samurai) and Nico Burger (another FJ Cruiser) will be joining him there. But they won’t be alone – 7 more qualifying spots from the Western Cape are up for grabs, and together with the 10 qualifiers each from the Free State, Gauteng and Mpumalanga who will be make the cut this year, they will be one of 40 teams fighting it out for the grand prize in the grand final, and the title as the Dust Series national champion. No other 4×4 competition can boast truly national status like that, so ultimate bragging rights are genuinely up for grabs!
But it was not as clear cut as the podium may suggest. Only 160 points seperates first and tenth place with all competitors leaving nothing out on the road to claim those spots in the final.
The full log and results can be seen here.