SA Opel fan wins Autobahn trip
HEADED FOR THE AUTOBAHN: Jacques Ooosterhuizen and his wife will be heading off to Germany to drive on the autobahn soon. Image: Quickpic
Jacques Oosthuizen, a Johannesburg based Opel fan, has won the ultimate prize in Opel’s "Wir Leben Autobahn" game, a racing competition held over a period of three months on the automaker's Facebook Page.
Oosthuizen and a partner will visit the home of Opel and experience a drive on the German Autobahn, one of the only roads in the world with no specific speed limit.
VIRTUAL TO REAL
The competition opened up with 3704 fans racing for a top leaderboard spot in the virtual Astra OPC game on the company’s Facebook page. The top 20 fastest competitors made it through to the final round which was held at the Gerotek vehicle test facility in Pretoria on July 13 2013.
All the participants were given first-hand experience of the Astra OPC’s dynamic handling, power and agility as they faced the final and real test of their driving ability.
The day included an overview of the brand, presentations on driving awareness, basic road skills and mechanical knowledge and then of course putting theory into practice.
Oosthuizen said: “I have never experienced a car that can handle as well as the OPC, it surprised me. The redesign is amazing and I cannot put words to the experience, especially getting to experience the car at a track like Gerotek.”
Participants were required to drive the 206kW car at high speed around the oval track.
PUT TO TEST
Opel brand manager Christopher Cradock said: “I am quite happy to see that our fans are also very talented drivers and that we now have twenty very good drivers who are out there acting as ambassadors of the brand.”
The final winner and first place position was chosen based on the fastest lap time on both the dynamics race and through the cones on the straight track with the least cones hit as well as the driver’s ability to demonstrate good vehicle control through the obstacles.
Oosthuizen said: “It’s the first competition I have ever won and it will be mine and my wife’s first trip overseas. It’s amazing to know a company is willing to go to this length to reward a fan.”
The five-night prize to Germany includes a plant tour of the Opel plant in Rüsselsheim, where the Opel Insignia and the Astra five-door models are manufactured, a tour of the Opel museum in Rüsselsheim and an OPC track day at the Opel Proving Grounds in Dudenhofen.
The pair will drive a planned route drive on the Autobahn and an Opel motor vehicle will be provided for their stay in Germany.