“We have taken a decision to go international with the Spirit of Africa Trophy to mark our six years of sponsorship, as well as eleven years of the competition by inviting teams from our neighbouring countries, Namibia and Botswana and our sport arch-rivals Australia,” said Jaco Steenekamp, General Manager: Sales and Marketing for Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles.
Steenekamp added, “Our association with the competition and rally legend Sarel van der Merwe has been tremendous in promoting the Amarok brand and showcasing its off road capabilities to the thousands of participants that we have hosted since Amarok’s introduction in 2010.”
Each country will be represented by five teams, each comprising two people that will be showcasing their technical off-road driving skills in the toughest 4×4 challenge in Africa.
“The international competition will be hard core and more technical to ensure that we challenge and test the 4×4 skills of the participating teams. Each of the five days of the competition will have different challenges. The results from each day will not be communicated to the teams until at the prize giving ceremony on the last day of the competition,” explained Sarel van der Merwe, the host of the competition. “This will make the competition more exciting and intriguing to the teams.”
The top five teams to represent South Africa at the 2015 Spirit of Amarok Trophy will be decided from the 20 teams that will be contesting in the local finals in August at the Kwalata Game Reserve in Botswana. The top 20 finalists emerged from 500 competing teams at the 2015 Spirit of Africa Trophy elimination rounds in Zeerust, which took place between April and June.