The second stage in dust and without 4x4 dust and windscreen

07.01.2014

Ales Loprais continued the Dakar Rally encouraged by the success in the first stage, which he finished with the Queen 69 on the second place.

Ales Loprais continued the Dakar Rally encouraged by the success in the first stage, which he finished with the Queen 69 on the second place. And a really hard work waited for him and the others racers too. After the start from San Luis brought the connection section of 304 km racers to the Sierra Nevada, which then all circled in the 400 km long bypass. So they can see the Payun volcano with a height of over three and a half kilometre or the lake Laguna se Llancanelo with a natural reserve from all sides. But there was no time to watching. Organizers prepared one of the fastest stages of the rally, which however proved as tricky. Measured section started on the clay base, which was after 40 km replaced by stones. Ales Loprais with the winner of the first stage Mardeev went first and after about two hours it looked very promising for the Czech crew – the results showed them on the first place, five second before Mardeev. But then stopped luck for the leading duo. Firstly arrived news about the accident of Mardeev. Kamaz crew could not get out of the cab, but was blessing in disguise. Dutchman De Rooy helped more than fifteen minutes the crew to get out. Help rivals in need is a gesture that is appreciated.

Grey and unusually harsh sand dunes in Nihuilu made it hot even for Ales Loprais. He reached the finish destination in San Rafael with a broken windscreen and on the 14th place. Finally the official web site of the race said that it was more than 45 minutes loss of the winning De Rooy, exactly 45 minutes and 5 second. In the overall ranking it means that Aleš is on the seventh place. His loss to the first De Rooy is 43 minutes and 46 seconds.

“Hello to all in the Czech Republic. Though it perhaps sounds strange, I would call this day a happy stage. Unfortunately, shortly after the start we lost the 4x4 dust. The whole time I was thinking how we will go through the last 80 km of dunes that awaited us. With the 9,5-ton truck it is really a lottery, which we finally won, even though we lost a lot of time in sand. Another adrenaline moment came about 30 km after the start, when the wind pushed windscreen into the cabin and broke it. We had to stop, kick the glass and continue in the dust gruelling 370 km! Only in glasses. During the day we overtook dozens of cars at full speed. With one hand you hold the steering wheel, with the other you cover the exes from stones flying from vehicles ahead. Today we endured a lot of powder, but we reached the stage in good health. 4x4 dust will be fixed tomorrow, so today was a really happy day,” describes our pilot Ales Loprais what actually happened on the track.

Today is the third stage from San Rafael to San Juan. And today should fear those who do not like heights. View will be on almost the whole South America. Cars and trucks will during the third stage climb four times to altitude of three kilometre and motorbikes and quads to a height of 4300 meters above sea level. Mountain terrain bellow the Aconcagua volcano will test the readiness and technical capability of all participants. And after a day of scratching up the hill waits at the end of measured section the steep descent. During the last few kilometres descend trucks and cars from two and half kilometres to approximately eight hundred meters, motorcyclist will fall from more and four kilometres to 1700 metres. Different target altitude shows that the bivouac will split for the first time this year. Depo of the motorcyclist will be isolated.

You can find videos from Stage 1 and 2 here:  http://www.youtube.com/user/LopraisTatraTeam

We wish everyone to not waste your nerves while watching the big race, maybe due to a poorly functioning official website. But this is Dakar Rally, full of surprising news and adrenaline. That applies not only to racers but all of us who support and go on!

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