Castrol is co-sponsoring the Ford Neil Woolridge Motorsport team in the South African Cross Country Series (SACCS).
Ford Neil Woolridge Motorsport (NWM) won the Class T championship honors last year in the highly competitive series, which starts this weekend. The SACCS is made up of five 400km (250 mile) events and the marathon Toyota Kalahari Botswana 1000km (620 mile) Desert Race.
NWM team principal Neil Woolridge said, “Last year was fantastic for the team thanks to our unwavering focus on performing at the highest level, both in terms of the team’s physical fitness and vehicle preparation, which helped us finish first and third in Class T.
“It will be no different this season as we set out to claim back-to-back titles.
The Ford Castrol squad will feature two NWM-built and run Ford Ranger V8 entries in Class T for the season, led by title holders Lance Woolridge and Ward Huxtable. The 2018 championship win was the first for Lance Woolridge.
The cars conform to the highest Class T1 specification, as campaigned internationally in the FIA World Cup for Cross Country Rallies, the Dakar Rally and the FIA class in the SACCS.
Some of the key differences compared to the South African-spec Class T Ranger include a fully independent rear suspension in place of the solid axle, mounting of the engine lower down and further back for optimized weight distribution, and upgraded brakes and tires.
“The new FIA-class vehicle represents the next evolution of our successful Ranger program, developed in conjunction with Ford Performance,” Woolridge said. “We’ve built a total of 22 cross country Rangers since we began this project in 2012, and there are 18 of our vehicles competing internationally.
“Our new FIA-class Ranger incorporates a wide range of developments and performance upgrades based on the knowledge and experience we have gained over the past five years with the current model.”
“For 2019, we’re also delighted to welcome Castrol as a valuable co-sponsor and partner to the team,” he added. “Castrol has supplied us with top-quality oil and lubricants for many years and has been one of the most famous and successful sponsors in South African motorsport for decades. It’s great to have them on board this year.”