Here we go, 2014 Dakar Rally starts!

05.01.2014

End of waiting, start of the first stage of the Dakar Rally is scheduled for today. The way from Rosario to San Luis with the liaison section of 629 km and the special stage of 180 km is waiting for the competitors.

Even before the start the Dakar Rally showed one of its favourite pitfalls – unpredictable weather. Starting point Rosario, the birthplace of the Marxist revolutionary Ernesto Che Guevara, was exposed to the very hot weather and drought for several weeks. With the arrival of the first participants, however, came the storm. Planes with some teams even had to change the destination airport at the last moment due to weather. However, though lightning, thunder and rain was the pre race program almost perfectly maintained.

As the Argentine double winner in the quads category Marcos Patronelli pointed out, the race showed its true colours even before the start. “It will be a very challenging Dakar Rally,”said Patronelli. And the race manager Etienne Lavigne confirmed his words:“It will be the most difficult Dakar after the moving to the South America.”Trucks must overcome the route of 5213 measured km, motorcycles 5228 km and cars 5522 km. But the grey sky ceded its place to brilliant sunlight at the time of the parade after the scrutineering and the audience could enjoy the arrival of the big favourites of the 36th year.

Today will fans watch the eager racers at the track. The narrow tracks will require the utmost vigilance from the start. Readiness of the crews will examine even the rocky stretches and jumps. There will be no time to familiarize with the terrain - everyone knows that the total placement may be decided at any time.

Similar feelings of respect for the competition as had our pilot yesterday had even the biggest rivals of Ales. “Last time I won, but I am not concerned with previous years now. Repeat the triumph is much more difficult,” admitted Eduard Nikolaev from Kamaz. “Kamaz has five fast trucks and five good racers. And there are the others,” pointed out Gerard de Rooy, the other favourite of trucks category and added: “We will go from the start as good as we can and at the rest day we will look how it is going. But we have to think of everything. Failure or defect may cost us the race.”

We would like to conclude today’s news with the Wish to the 504 crew from Mr Miroslav Popelka from Prostějov:
“Good afternoon, starting tomorrow, I will once again sit at the computer long into the night and monitor on the map movement of the Queen 69 at each stage and push you by the will-power to the finish. Whether all medical, technical and other problems avoid you. Overcome all obstacles, so we can celebrate your success after the final stage. I wish this to you, let the hard work and efforts finally fully return in the toughest competition in the world. I wish you solid back (watch out for jumps) and good luck for the whole route!”

Thank you all so much for all the wishes that came to the whole team!

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