Watson edges Green, wins Toyota rally
HARARE – Reigning Toyota-Zimbabwe Challenge Rally champion Jess Watson edged Greg Green to win the one-off rally cross meet in an exhilarating final at Donnybrook on Saturday.
Watson, driving a Mitsubishi Evo 10 and Green in an Evo 8, both stormed into the final of the four wheel turbo charged premium class after posting imposing times during the heat stages.
Watson clocked three minutes 10 seconds in the first heat while Green stopped the clock in a second best heat time of three minutes 13 seconds to qualify for the two-car-start 5,6 kilometres race.
The event was however more of a fun event so both drivers went on to give aspiring navigators a chance to co-drive them in the final.
However, due to the driver’s in-depth knowledge of the Donnybrook track, there was no fun fare in the final with both men stepping up a gear to fight for the bragging rights on offer.
Watson was in scintillating form and raced home in a time of three minutes nine seconds, four seconds ahead of Green.
In the two wheel drive class Gary Flack in a Toyota MR2 beat Tyron Carr in a Toyota Corrolla to win the class with a time of three minutes 40 seconds, a comfortable 15 seconds ahead of Carr.
24 drivers entered the four wheel drive and two wheel drive classes with eight of them being rookies, a sign that the sport is gaining in popularity.
Among the notable top drivers that participated in the rally-X, apart from Watson and Green, was double African rally champion Jamie Whyte as well as Richard Robinson, Big Chitima and Rowan Whyte.
Recently crowned Arc champion Mohammed Essa of Zambia did not travel owing to work commitments.
Jamie Whyte’s mechanic Luwis Bindu, competing for the first time on the Donnybrook track, emerged as the best rookie of the day winning a Jialing 125cc motorcycle for his efforts.