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Toyota Gazoo Racing South Africa (TGRSA) at the 2024 South African Rally-Raid Championship

Toyota Gazoo Racing South Africa (TGRSA) is gearing up for the third round of the 2024 South African Rally-Raid Championship (SARRC), showcasing their prowess in the Toyota Gazoo Racing South Africa Safari 1000. This event, scheduled from June 21-23, will take place in the rugged terrain of Thabazimbi, Limpopo Province.

Event Highlights

Replacing the iconic TGRSA 1000 Desert Race, the Safari 1000 is the only marathon event of the year, featuring extreme distances over a grueling three-day format. This marathon is a crucial contender for the 2025 World Rally-Raid Championship, ensuring high stakes and thrilling competition.

Key Features:

  • Dates: June 21-23, 2024
  • Location: Thabazimbi, Limpopo Province
  • Format: Three-day marathon event
  • Significance: Contender for the 2025 World Rally-Raid Championship

TGRSA Teams and Competitors

TGRSA has dominated the season thus far, securing top positions in the first two rounds. Leading the charge are:

  • Giniel de Villiers and Elvéne Vonk: Piloting the Toyota Hilux IMT EVO.
  • Guy Botterill and Dennis Murphy
  • Henk Lategan and Brett Cummings: Fresh from a recent victory.
  • Saood Variawa and Francois Cazalet: Aiming for a turnaround in their season.

These teams are prepared to showcase their skills and compete fiercely in the Safari 1000.

Event Schedule

Day 1: Friday, June 21

  • Castrol Qualifying Race: A 14 km race starting at 09:30 to determine the starting order.
  • First Stage: A 100 km sprint beginning at 12:45.

Day 2: Saturday, June 22

  • Stages Two and Three: A challenging 189 km route, run twice.

Day 3: Sunday, June 23

  • Stages Four and Five: A 187 km stretch, also run twice.

The central hub of the event is Koedoeskop Primary School, serving as the Designated Service Point, Start/Finish lines, and podium ceremonies venue.

Additional Competitions

  • Road to Dakar Challenge: Motorcycle competitors can earn points towards a 2025 Dakar Rally entry.
  • Rookie Ultimate Competitors: Potential for an outright Dakar entry.

Championship Points and Stakes

Winning the Safari 1000 is a significant achievement, offering 45 points compared to the usual 30. This increases the stakes, making every position crucial for championship contenders.

Weather Conditions

Thabazimbi is expected to have perfect racing weather, with temperatures ranging from 18°C to 25°C and clear skies, ensuring optimal conditions for competitors and spectators alike.

TGRSA Team Principal’s Insights

Shameer Variawa, TGRSA Team Principal, expressed his excitement:

“We are excited about the Safari 1000, especially as it is an event we are sponsoring. This adds extra pressure, but also a great opportunity for our teams to showcase their capabilities. Our crews have been preparing diligently, and we are confident in their abilities to deliver strong performances.”


The Toyota Gazoo Racing South Africa Safari 1000 promises to be an exhilarating event, filled with intense competition and spectacular displays of skill and endurance. With top teams vying for crucial points and the opportunity to secure a place in the 2025 World Rally-Raid Championship, this marathon is set to be a highlight of the rally-raid season.

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