Giniel's bakkie wows at Goodwood
’I HAD A HILUX ON TWO WHEELS... Giniel De Villiers wowed fans at the 2013 2013 Goodwood Festival of Speed earning the top Driver’s Award. Image: Toyota
LONDON England – South Africa’s Giniel de Villiers was honoured with the Driver’s Award at the 2013 Goodwood Festival of Speed in England.
It was the 20th time that this legendary event was held in England.
De Villiers (41) drove his Dakar Toyota Hilux on the 4km Goodwood forest stage and was chosen by marshals and the clerk of the course as the most exciting driver during the event.
De Villiers was fourth fastest of all contenders on the forest stage and was only beaten by three World Rally Championship (WRC) cars.
‘THE GUYS REALLY LIKED THE BAKKIE’
De Villiers said: “The guys really liked the bakkie! I had the Hilux on two wheels on Friday (July 12) and I guess that people really enjoyed that.”
Giniel previously competed at the event in 2012 and 2013t marked the 20th time that the iconic hillclimb was held in England.
De Villiers said: “We come here to have some fun and showcase the Dakar Racing Hilux, yet in some sense it is also the spiritual start to our Dakar campaign, which will start in full force at the end of this month in the Namib desert.”
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Toyota Imperial South Africa Dakar team principal, Glyn Hall, said: “Giniel’s driving at Goodwood makes me very excited about our upcoming tests in Namibia. We have a large number of changes and improvements to test and it will give us a good idea of what our chances are in the 2014 Dakar.”
TOYOTA’S RACING HERITAGE
Toyota showcased its rich racing heritage at the event with fans being treated to all three recent generations of the automaker’s works Le Mans racers, notably the TS030 Hybrid that finished 2nd at the 2013 24 hour race.
Drivers Alex Wurz and Anthony Davidson drover the car up the famed slopes of Goodwood.
Other Toyota legends included the GT-One Le Mans car of 1998 - 1999 that was reunited with drivers Martin Brundle and Emanuel Collard, several racing Celica models, the last works-entered Toyota Corolla WRC and a classic AE86 to stand alongside a special Toyota 86 model – the Open concept.
De Villiers said: “The Goodwood Festival of Speed is an amazing show. So many great and historic racing cars and drivers are on hand and the atmosphere is incredible. If you love cars, you have to attend this festival at least once in your life.”
An estimated 150 000 people attended the 2013 Goodwood Festival of Speed.