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National rally ace to wow MPH

2008-01-28 08:36
National rally star Hergen Fekken is set to again provide the opening entertainment at this year's MPH show starting Thursday. Wheels24 caught up with him.

Fekken will be wowing the crowds with the car he cruised to second place in last year's national rally championship - his VW Polo 2.0 in complete rally spec with four-wheel drive, to boot!

The latest edition of the MPH show is hosted by Top Gear presenters Jeremy Clarkson and Richard "The Hamster" Hammond and brought to you by BP Ultimate.

It's your second year as part of the MPH show. Were you surprised at all to be called in to participate? Or are you merely fulfilling a sponsorship agreement?

Hergen Fekken:
Well, it came with the BP sponsorship. When Volkswagen was approached to participate, it would only have one of its three works rally drivers participate. So I was kind of expecting it and since I really enjoyed last year's show, it's fine.

You're a top local rally driver while the MPH show is more of a stunt show. How do the two compare?

They are completely different. It's a different environment; I'm used to driving on gravel roads and this is on a compact stage. But many of the stunts and handling demonstrations are similar. The stunt guys really impressed me last year.

Which is more fun?

I definitely prefer to drive rallies, but what they do is a lot of fun. Some of those guys actually go around the world doing this. They practice a lot and look as though they really enjoy it. But if I got to rally and do stunts, that would be great too.

If you had to teach those stunt drivers a thing or two, what would it be?

Ja, the stunt guys are really good, but they practice a lot and it's not that fast because the space is so small. I don't think they even get out of first gear. But as soon as they hit second or third gear, I'll show them something. (laughs) But there are some things they do that I could never do...

You race a 2.0-litre Polo in the national rally championship. What is your daily driver?

I drive a Golf 5 GTI. It's one of the benefits of being a works VW driver.

Of all the stunts in the MPH show, which one do you think your Golf would best perform?

Last year they did a lot of handbrake turns where they reverse out of it and driving around cones. They used an Alfa, but I think the GTI would be a lot better.

Is your dream car a VW? A Passat, perhaps?

My real dream car? It would have to be a Ferrari Enzo! In the VW brand, I'd like an R32, but it must have a manual gearbox. I can't drive those automatics...

  • Hergen Fekken and the MPH '08 crew at the Coca-Cola Dome from Thursday, 31 January to Sunday, 3 February.

    Ticket prices for adults are R170 (standard) and R270 (premium) and tickets for children under 12 are R100 (excludes prime time show at 20:00 on Friday and Saturday evenings).

    Tickets are on sale and can be bought through the Computicket website or by dialing 083 915 8000. All prices include Computicket charges.

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