|AD Desert Challenge: Laurent Rosso and Team Dessoude leading in T2.|
The desert - it can be magical, or an absolute inferno. Under the extreme heat, the competitors in the Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge were subjected to all its facets. Tuesday, the extremely soft sand made things very complicated, turning the route into a real trap, out of which only five competitors were to emerge.
Among the survivors was Laurent Rosso, with his Nissan Pathfinder T2. Finishing third in the timed stage, the Frenchman managed to climb up to third place in the overall classification as well as claiming the lead in the T2 category. Despite a small fright today, Laurent managed a stage win and is now lying second - while Joseph, his father, is fourth.
But Laurent remains clearheaded and is concentrating on the race ahead: "Since the start of this race, everything has been going well. Tuesday, the small incident which disturbed our day ended up by finishing quite well. A small plastic section on the fan stopped it working properly. As the engine was overheating, we preferred to stop and find out what the problem was.
With François (Borsotto), we quickly fixed things in order to finish the special stage without losing too much time. The race started off at a very rapid pace from the very first day, but yesterday was a real epic. It was really difficult to make any progress in the sand, which was extremely soft, and the average speed was very low. That leg ended up penalizing almost the whole field, as only five of us crossed the finish line.
The rest of the caravan were neutralized and took penalties. Overall, we had a really good day. This evening, we are lying in second place and have a good lead in the T2 category. Our aim now is to hold on to this lead and to get to the end without breaking anything."
In the T2 category, one Rosso can hide another: Laurent’s father Joseph is now lying third in his category and 4th overall. For his first race behind the wheel of the brand-new 4.8 litre Nissan Patrol, fresh out of the Dessoude workshops, Joseph is getting to grips with his new vehicle. Heavier than the Pathfinder, the Patrol is just as much at ease in the sea of sand in the Emirates. With Jean-Marie Lurquin as a navigator, the crew of the car is enjoying the rally a bit more every day.
André Dessoude is in Abu Dhabi to follow the progress of the Rosso family. A few weeks before the Tunisia rally, where his team will be entered, the Wizard of Saint-Lô is savouring the results of the two T2 vehicles. And, depending on the final result of the Desert Challenge, it is not totally out of the question that Laurent Rosso could take part in the World Cup and enter the second round in - Tunisia.
Leading positions on Leg 3 (Cars)
01) Leonid Novitskiy / Andy Schulz I 14:04:52
02) Laurent Rosso / Francois Borsotto I 16:36:36
03) Abdul Bari / bin Sugat/Ali Mirza I 23:00:36
Leading positions on Leg 3 (Bikes)
01) Marc Coma I 12:49:29
02) Sean Gaugain I 13:01:55
03) David Casteu I 13:03:51
2010/03/31 | 19:33 CET | ARTICLE: MR/HS/DESSOUDE