Bridgestone South Africa

Mercedes Gelandewagen Club wins 4x4 Fundi Challenge

Nov 01, 2010

Johann Marx and Johann Bisschoff driving a Mercedes Gelandewagen are the 2010 Bridgestone South Africa 4x4 Fundi Challenge champions. The pair just edged out the husband and wife combinations of Isuzu Off Road Club's Charles and Judy Pearce (Toyota Land Cruiser) and Safari Centre 4x4 Club's Andre and Yvonne de Villiers (Toyota Fortuner).

Marx and Bisschoff scored 91 points in the Gauteng final of the seven-round competition that took competitors to off road obstacle courses around the country and in Swaziland. The Pearces scored 89 points and were closely followed by the de Villiers couple, who had won the event for the previous two years in a row, with 88 points.

Thirty five crews contested the finals, which followed six rounds earlier in the year that resulted in the top 40 points scorers qualifying for the two-day event held at the African Outdoor Group's off road facility at Hartbeespoort Dam.

The Mercedes Gelandewagen Club won the club spirit award ahead of the Isuzu Off Road Club and the Lichtenburg 4x4 Club.

The Bridgestone South Africa 4x4 Fundi Challenge was introduced in 2006 as a competition for standard production 4x4 vehicles and become so popular that it went national last year. It was born out of the establishment of the Bridgestone 4x4 Fundi programme in 2004, a unique initiative to train dealer sales staff in all aspects of 4x4 tyres and off road driving.

Johan Mostert, who managed the 4x4 Fundi programme, commented: "Although there is a diverse mix of competing vehicles, ranging from standard to purpose-built production vehicles and also modified vehicles, the playing field is kept reasonably level by means of a handicap system that penalises the vehicles with modifications or specialist off road driving equipment.

"We see the growing popularity of the Bridgestone 4x4 Fundi Challenge as acknowledgement of the success of Bridgestone's concept of providing 4x4 off road driving enthusiasts with a family-oriented activity in a safe and environmentally friendly environment. We will be back next year with a bigger and better Challenge."

"A key objective with 4x4 Fundi is to position Bridgestone South Africa as a responsible company that cares about the environment and treats it with respect," said Mandy Lovell, Bridgestone's public relations manager.

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Bridgestone South Africa

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