|Africa Eco Race: Jean Antoine Sabatier wins the third stage.|
The third day of the Africa Eco Race had 387 kilometers of special stage on the plains and through the mountains of Southern Morocco. It was a very fast special, with the cars reaching speeds above 200 km/h: classic racing on dry lakebeds but also very technical sections between the rocks. Jean Antoine Sabatier claimed his second victory in the Africa Eco Race, well before Jean Louis Schlesser, who is now head-to-head with Sabatier in the general ranking. Kanat Shagirov from Kazakhstan promised us spectacular driving and so he did today, finishing third in the stage with the H3 Hummer.
Jacky Loomans follows the leaders of the race and waits for the Mauritanian sand before pushing his Overdrive HiLux. Together with Frits Driesmans and his experienced team he is a force to be reckoned with. Last year they left the race after the father of his co-driver died at home, at that time they were second in the overall ranking.
Michel Turon Barrere with the CRD Buggy has a good pace and finishes in fifth, he drives fast and surprises himself with the results: “I had great fun today with beautiful powerslides over 160 km/h. I love it! Thanks to Guillaume’s great navigation but also to the sharp roadbook. I feel completely confident driving this car and 5th position is way over what I was expecting.”
Elisabete JACINTO shows her teeths in the Truck category. After the two first days dominated by Tomas TOMECEK and his TATRA truck, Elisabete JACINTO wins her first stage 16 minutes ahead of the Czech. That takes her only 5,59 minutes behind in the overall ranks and she is determined to continue her ascension. Behind, Hungarian Miklos KOVACS ends third and secures his podium position in the Truck category.
Robert Theuretzbacher is racing his first big rallyraid event and he manages to win todays stage in the motorbike category. With several of the fast riders in trouble he sees the chance and grabs it. Last years' winner Martin Fontyn was in the lead until he crashed. The consequences of this crash meant today he had to leave the competition.
Another newcomer is Joris van Dyck who finished third: the tough Belgian rider has raced the Breslau in Poland and the Tuareg and is one of the fast surprises of the Africa Eco Race. Even if he finishes 5th today Mickael Pisano takes the overall lead in a top 5 that is less than 10 minutes apart.
Today the 2014 SONANGOL AFRICA ECO RACE continues on its way towards the south, with stage 4 from ASSA to AS KAHN, 404km of which 389km of special stage.
2014/01/03 | 11:20 CET | ARTICLE: MR/NH/AER