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Simola Hillclimb

Whether you are a petrol head, speed lover or just someone who loves a good time – don’t miss out – you will leave satisfied and enthralled at the spectacle.

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When we set out on this journey, we were told that few would come to Knysna for a purely motorsport event, but with vision and hard work we have built a local motorsport lifestyle showcase that attracts competitors, spectators and broadcast viewers from around the globe.

In our striving to always keep improving we have evaluated what was good and not so good from previous years, listened to all our stakeholders, looked at other global events for inspiration and ideas, and then decided which factors to implement with the view to making it a better experience for all.

The 2019 Hillclimb confirmed this strategy as it continued to show growth on all levels. A little over 17 200 people from around the globe came through the gate, drivers from the USA, UK and Germany competed, while spectators from Australia, the DRC, Germany, Hong Kong, Namibia, the Netherlands, Switzerland, the UK, and USA (in addition to SA) purchased tickets via our online system.

From a media perspective, once again the event trended at number one on Twitter during  the weekend with over 250 000 impressions, activity on Facebook delivered over 150 000 shares reaching over 2 million users, and other social media engagement was at an all-time high. Traditional media also granted the event significant coverage pre- and post-race including multiple live crossings on ENCA news.

Our media team accredited 144 media personnel from around the country and abroad. To date, the You Tube video views (those that we have managed to track) number over 7.3 million, while our live stream boasted over 252 000 views delivering 1,373 million minutes. Average viewing time was 25 minutes, which is excellent by international standards. Our website attracted 46 559 users during May alone.

On track the Gould single seater was quickest car again in the hands of Andre Bezuidenhout, yet it did not beat its track record of just 35.5 sec from the previous year. The talk of the event though was the specially built – in New Zealand – Nissan GTR of Franco Scribante. This car created serious hype and social media chatter. Despite it making its debut on the hill after just a few shakedown laps in Port Elizabeth on the way to Knysna, it won the Modified Saloon category notwithstanding a number of gremlins afflicting it during the weekend.

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