Saturday, the deserved day of rest

12.01.2014

Karel Loprais knows as the six-time winner the Dakar Rally very well. Therefore, we had some questions about it in the middle of this year:

Saturday was a rest day. What is actually regime of the team at this day?
"The team can sleep longer, but they must do heavy maintenance on the truck. They do the essential things, they have to replace those things which mechanics see fit."

Do the members of the racing crew help?
"They need to put together. If need be, they certainly help, but there's enough mechanics. But the main mechanic that goes in the crew would be hanging around to know what they were doing at the truck."

And what about official meetings, for example with fans? Do they have time for it?
"It depends on the place. In the South America there are rest days In the large cities, so there are many people. But teams do not have enough time for fans, they have to work on technique and gain strength. In our time we travelled without assistance, so we had to work on the truck. Despite the fact that there were not so many people in Africa."

Perhaps Saturday actually brought all the much-needed rest. Ales Loprais confided that they really needed it:
"Last day t was very hard. We rode daily from 500 to 900 kilometres, we don't want to risk anything and there is always something special happen around the date of my birth. The Queen is now undergoing the great service. The fundamental technical errors could not meet us now. This year is the Dakar very hard. I believe that the second half will be happier for us!"

7th stage: Salta - Salta
The connecting part: 230 km / The special stage: 525 km
After the rest day another portion of kilometres of racing is waiting for truckers. Racers will circle the large loop from Salta to return back to the same place. And the huge loop look s menacing - who will be not careful, easily could get stuck. At the beginning there is a 115 km long "warm-up", after which starts the next big test of skills and endurance of racing techniques. The natural parks Los Cardones and Olaroz Cauchari will offer the rocky terrain. After that the riders can go faster, but at about 340th kilometre the stony terrain will be back and the sand afterwards. And then comes the Latin American specialty - roughly twenty kilometres of crossing the Salinas Grandes salt plains. The straight section can certainly mix the overall ranking. The unavoidable fact is that the most of the stage will be run at an altitude of 3500 meters, the truckers will climb to more than four kilometres twice. After the reach the finish of the measured section there will be 115 kilometres to return to bivouac in Salta.

They are all thinking of course about improving their current position. Everyone wants to get closer to interim leader of the Dakar, Gerard de Rooy. The technical problems have avoided him but in the sixth stage he had to go without the windscreen after hitting the tree. "We had a very good first week. Everyone else had some problems and because of them we are leading," admitted de Rooy. "But the second week is very important. Now I'm not the one who needs a push, so I'll wait and see what will happen," said the current leader, which is an hour and 40 minutes before Ales Loprais. "Nobody will finish the Dakar without problems, they can meet even de Rooy," said Karel Loprais. "The finish is far away and nothing is lost," supports Karel Loprais the team of his heart.

Have a nice Sunday, support our team even in the second half of the Dakar Rally and this time literally - "We are going forward!"

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