48th Blind Navigators Rally

This year’s REACT Blind Navigators Regularity Rally (the 13th year they have sponsored this event) was again a great success due to the hard work by the sponsors and organisers. Unfortunately the organisers were unable to recruit enough volunteer drivers so only 40 of the 58 navigators who would have liked to compete actually started. The organisers and the navigators are very grateful to the 8 new drivers who did come forward and even though some of them got lost they all said that they had had a great time. We hope to see them again on the next Rally.

It started at the Western Province Motor Club’s Clubhouse and went North straight over the N7 before looping back and going up the Old Malmesbury Road all the way to Kalbaskraal. From there a loop round via the N7 to Abbotsdale and back again to Kalbaskraal. Unfortunately 3 crews were delayed by a goods train which crawled across the road. This, allegedly, delayed the first of these crews by 7 minutes but even if, with the actual 5 minutes error at the control just after the railway line, this had been allowed for it would not have altered who won. Then it was on to Andy’s Farm and a very welcomed and enjoyable break with some excellent refreshments.

After that it was back to Killarney via South of Atlantis. The organisers put a sting in the tail and when competitors came off the N7 the first time they had to turn left and go round a loop before coming back and turning right to the finish which caught out 3 crews as they missed the Control in that section.

After the finish the results of last year’s Series was announced with Dries Burger just beating Bianca van Schoor with John Louw 3rd in the Braille Reading section while in the Partially Sighted section Anton van Tonder also just beat Karin Matthyser with Chris van der Vyver a close 3rd. Then it was on to the Rally results with prizes all the way down to 15th in the Braille section kind courtesy of the sponsors and other donors. In the Partially Sighted Category Anton van Tonder driven by his regular driver Lappies Labuschagne beat Karin Mathyser and Tony Norton with Martin Swart driven by new driver Rykie Kannemeyer in 3rd.

The Braille Category was won by Christo Vorster driven by Angela van der Merwe from John Louw and Pieter Neethling and Natasha Kruger and André Joubert 3rd.

A full set of the results is available on the SARRA web site, http://www.sarra.co.za

After the Prize Giving Lions International, Sea Point, for the 48th time (that is every year since Blind Navigators Rallies started in South Africa, and we believe the world, in 1966) provided all the competitors and officials with a meal.

The next Blind Navigators Regularity Rally takes place on Saturday 4 May and is hosted by the Worcester Lions Club. If you are interested in helping by being a driver or would like to know more please contact Roger at rally@mantons.net or 083-415-3184.