For a second year running, Dunlop Tyres South Africa is the official tyre partner of the new-look TOYOTA GAZOO Racing South Africa GR Cup, part of South Africa’s premier motorsport series, the National Extreme Festival.
This exciting series features two classes this year. The Media Challenge pits leading automotive journalists against each other as they battle it out on racetracks across the country, while young motorsport enthusiasts also get to show their grit and talent out on the track as part of the Junior Drivers Challenge.
Journalists Mark Jones (The Citizen), Denis Droppa (TimesLIVE Motoring), Brendon Staniforth (Maroela Media), Chad Lückhoff (AutoTrader), Setshaba Mashigo (ASAMM) and Reuben van Niekerk (Wheels24) are racing in the Media Challenge in 2023.
They’re driving the new GR 86 rear-wheel-drive, rather than the all-wheel-drive GR Yaris models used in 2022, and all have been putting their Dunlop Direzza Semi Slick tyres through their paces.
Racing on last year’s race vehicles at this year’s TGRSA GR Cup are a mix of youngsters with a passion for motorsport, some of them from the GR Junior Academy racing mentorship and training programme created by Toyota South Africa and racing legend Leeroy Poulter.
The junior racers are Nikki Vostanis, Sa’aad Variawa, Karah Hill, Bjorn Bertholdt, Taariq Adam and Ryan Naicker.
With Dunlop as official tyre partner, drivers in the TOYOTA GAZOO Racing South Africa GR Cup have the support of the ATS Motorsport Dunlop Service Crew, who provide full trackside tyre service at all national and regional meetings. This support service – operated from a fully equipped Dunlop Racing mobile workshop staffed by a skilled and knowledgeable team – is free to all drivers competing on Dunlop tyres. The junior drivers and their GR Yaris cars are supported by Bucket List Racing.
TOYOTA GAZOO Racing South Africa GR Cup is one of four out of seven National Extreme Festival categories in which Dunlop provides the tyres. The others are Global Touring Cars (GTC), GTC SupaCup, and Compcare VW Polo Cup.
Lubin Ozoux, CEO of Dunlop manufacturer and distributor Sumitomo Rubber South Africa, said the iconic tyre brand continues to prove its world-class road tyre tech on the racetrack.
“Racing plays a big role in the development of Dunlop’s tyre technology for the public. We leverage the same technology, research, development and key learnings from our global motorsport heritage to influence the tyres you drive on every day. Dunlop tyres are designed with performance, safety, stability, grip and durability in mind to give drivers the confidence to take the road, or hit the track, and enjoy a racing thrill like no other. We believe in elevating the local motorsport fraternity and ensuring these talented drivers can do what they love in the safest and most exhilarating manner possible,” he said.
Last year’s TOYOTA GAZOO Racing SA cup action saw six of South Africa’s foremost motoring writers slug it out on the track including Ashley Oldfield, Sean Nurse, Jeanette Kok-Kritzinger, Thomas Falkiner and Lerato Matebese. In the end it was Sean Nurse who won the inaugural series. END