Planning for the Four Wheel Drive Club of Southern Africa organised Toyota 1000 Desert Race, round three of the Absa Off road championship, is at an advanced stage and, according to race organiser Alan Gatley, there are some surprises in store for competitors.

The event gets underway with a 40km Prologue at 13h00 on Friday, 3 June followed by a 480km section from Game City in Gaborone to the designated service point at Mantshwabisi and back to Game City, which starts at 07h30 on Saturday. Survivors of day one will restart at Game City at 07:30 on Sunday and tackle the route in the opposite direction before finishing at Game City at approximately 14h00.

“We have made a number of changes to the route that are aimed at reducing average speeds,” said Alan Gatley. “The long straights that were so common on the Toyota 1000 Desert Race in the past have been shortened and the longest section is now only 7km.”

“There are four river crossings of which two are dry, sandy and rock strewn where crews will have to exercise caution. Despite the fact that there has been no rain the bush is dense and day one will require the front runners to do some route clearing at times.”

Spectators will be well catered for with 11 tar and 10 dirt road crossings dotted along the route.

“The Toyota 1000 is Botswana’s biggest sporting event that attracts tens of thousands of enthusiastic spectators,” said Gatley. “However, unruliness and scant regard for other road users has proved to be a major problem in recent years, which has led to frustrating traffic jams at spectator points.”

“We have worked closely with the Botswana Commissioner of Police and he has assured us that his officers will do their utmost to maintain traffic flows and keep unruly crowds in check.”

Original article from Car