Making the Blockhouse our home
From 1 000 motorbikes to giant long-haulers, it seems the Engen Blockhouse 1-Stop has (or soon will have) seen it all …
With Truck Test 2016 introducing a new format for the running of all future events, it was of utmost importance to find an appropriate venue (or hub, in Truck Test 2016 speak) from which to base the test.
FOCUS’s ongoing partnership with Engen, as sole fuel supplier, has grown since the very first Truck Test event in 2012 and is now well established. With the test trucks visiting many of its Truck Stop facilities throughout the years, the company was again the obvious partner.
“As Engen has been a part of the Truck Test family for some time, the company was only too happy for us to call on its resources again and make use of one of its many filling stations throughout the country as our base,” smiles FOCUS editor Charleen Clarke.
With Gauteng’s R59 highway confirmed as part of the route, the obvious choice became the Engen Blockhouse 1-Stop. The facility is also no stranger to hosting large events like Truck Test.
“For the last three years, the site has been used as the start for the annual ‘South Toy Run’, which attracts as many as 1 000 bikers,” says Ralph Ellis, one of the owners and managing director of Engen Blockhouse 1-Stop.
While you could probably park most of those bikes on the 20-odd entrants expected at Truck Test 2016, that’s more or less where the similarity between the two modes of transport ends.
So, how will the Blockhouse Facility cope – especially given that it is a 1-Stop facility, not a Truck Stop?
As it is, the facility holds two normal-pressure and two high-pressure pumps for 500 ppm diesel under the EDC (Engen Diesel Club) canopy. There are also another five 50 ppm diesel pumps under the main canopy.
Ellis is, therefore, not fazed: “Logistical management will take place during the test, where a dedicated lane will accommodate only the participating large trucks. Smaller trucks will be accommodated in a grassed-up area adjacent to the R59. We will be able to handle the number of vehicles expected.”
On an average month, Ellis reckons a number of around 400 trucks, of all sizes, make use of the site, which also offers a Quick Shop, Corner Bakery, Wimpy sit-down and take-away restaurant, and restroom facilities.
“I am very happy to be part of the Truck Test initiative, and trust that we can build on this relationship and be included in future events,” Ellis smiles.
Clarke concurs: “The Engen Blockhouse 1-Stop offers the right amount of space, the correct facilities and is ideally located to make it the perfect hub for future Truck Test events.
“With Truck Test 2016 the beginning of a new chapter in the Truck Test story, we expect a large and diverse field of entrants to take the opportunity to show what their vehicles can do. Our publicity of the new format has already raised considerable interest among our readers, and we just know that Truck Test 2016 will not disappoint!”