Brian Joss – In tribute to Burt Reynolds, the lead in the original 1981 movie, The Cannonball Run, who passed away in 2018, the Cannonballers gathered on a fine morning on Friday 18 September at Zwartkops Raceway for the annual running of the Round Table Cannonball Run Africa.
Since 2003, Cannonballers have been gathering from around the country to take part. Entries were limited to respect the COVID-19 regulations with an “Express” version. The end venue was kept a secret, with directions a mystery. it was Cannonball time!!
A full field competed starting off day one with a track event, while co-pilots participated in some karting action at Menlyn Shopping Centre. An entertaining cryptic clue challenge at the Transvaal State Artillery museum was followed by the participants reuniting with their partners before making their way to Sabie River Lodge just outside of Hazyview, Mpumalanga.
Once the McLaren’s, Porsche’s, Honda Civics and BMWs, to name a few, had been safely parked at the hotel, the “Mad Max” theme evening dinner commenced.
Due to lockdown there was limited planning permissible, so a more driver friendly route was chosen allowing the Cannonballers to take in the scenic roads of Mpumalanga. The highly anticipated sporting event, a 1,9km speed stretch was setup in the forests, out of the general public’s site. A shock winning time by a Merc 43 AMG had the contestants very glim at the awards dinner!
A purchasing challenge in the tourist town of Pilgrim’s Rest was a timely cash injection into the small struggling community. The visit to the Lisbon Falls near God’s Window was a first for many and a welcome opportunity to stretch their legs.
During the event the participants gave generously, raising over R80 000 for the Round Table and their charitable causes. The overall winner was a second time for husband and wife team of Juan & Samantha Botha in their F-Type Jaguar. Women’s Day Weekend 6-9 August 2021 will see the 18th running of the Cannonball Run Africa franchise. Follow their fun & mayhem or better yet, join them, by following them on https://www.facebook.com/SACannonballer
CAPTION: Ready to roll: the Round Table Cannonball challenge. Picture: Quickpic