The two Toyota Hilux of Castrol Team Toyota ran true at the Sun City 400 to complete the off road race in first and second position. It is Anthony Taylor and Dennis Murphy’s third win in succession and it puts the Hilux SP03 firmly at the top of the Donaldson Cross Country National Championship leader board with three races to go.
“The car ran faultlessly and both Anthony and Duncan raced well to build and keep a solid lead at the front of the pack,” says Castrol Team Toyota team principal Glyn Hall.
But a clean run does not mean that racing was easy. Says Hall: “With large parts of the route brand new Murphy had a hard task on his hand to find the route points, which he did commendably.”
Running first on the road did have its benefits. The Sun City race is traditionally held towards the end of the dry winter season and competitors race in dust. However areas of black clay and grass make for overtaking opportunities, which meant that Anthony and Duncan had to extend the Hilux performance a little to make sure the Ford crews in 3rd and 4th position did not get close.
With the win Taylor and Murphy moves 10 points clear of Chris Visser and Japie Badenhorst at the top of the championship table.
Toyota performed well in all the racing classes and wins in class SP, D and E meant that it also took the manufacturer prize. No less than 11 Hilux and one Land Cruiser finished the race, with Johan and Werner Horn winning class D in their Malelane Toyota Land Cruiser and in class E Douglas Fear and Kurt de Villiers took their Brytons Removals Toyota Hilux to the top of the podium.
But the Toyota team will have no time to admire the silverware from the last three wins as they finalise their preparations for the 2014 Dakar testing, scheduled to start on Sunday (4 August 2013) in the Namib.
“The Hilux has proven itself, but we have a large number of changes that we want to test,” says Hall.
Changes include suspension tweaks with new parts, new shock absorbers and many other detailed parts around the Hilux, including the rear independent suspension allowed under Dakar rules and some work on the engine.
Toyota Motorsport South Africa Acknowledges Its Sponsors and Specialist Official Supplier and Technical Partners
Toyota enjoys a mutually beneficial relationship with Castrol, Toyota Financial Services, Imperial Toyota Group, Innovation Group, 4x4 Mega World, Bosch, DeWalt, Donaldson, Edgecam, Ferodo, NGK, SKF and Spanjaard.