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Dakar Rally 2015: The real Odyssey before - or how to be at the Start in time. | 29.08.2014


Defender Challenge: Rd 5 of the series by Bowler takes place this weekend. | 29.08.2014


Rally dos Sertões: Honda HRC riders finished first part of the marathon stage. | 29.08.2014


Rally dos Sertões: Top 10 cars mixed after hardest stage - Spinelli still leader. | 28.08.2014


Rally dos Sertões PHOTOS: Impressions from the Marathonrally in Brazil (77). | 28.08.2014


Rally dos Sertões: Two X-Rally NWM Ford Ranger in good 2nd and 4th position. | 28.08.2014


Baja Poland: Poland to welcome 112 competitors in Baja Poland this weekend. | 28.08.2014













































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Australasian Safari: Competitors play "cat and mouse" on first Marathon day.






Monday's Marathon Leg, the first of two in this year's Australasian Safari, saw the top of the field in the motos, cars and quads secure their positions in a day of cat and mouse where caution was key to stay in the race. Limited servicing rules meant it was crucial to keep the vehicles in one piece over some incredibly difficult terrain.

The cars have faced another tough day and the Denhams in their special built Mitsubishi Triton remain at the top of the field, five minutes in front of the Australian local V8-Series "Star" Craig Lowndes and Kees Weel in their Holden Colorado (Australian GM-version of Isuzu D-Max).

Craig was happy with the way the car drove and stuck to the game plan of looking after it to get it to the end of the two Marathon days. "The car went really well. I got told last night that we just had to get through these stages pretty much unscathed, so we're not too concerned about time. Our main priority, given Kees and I have to work on it ourselves, is to make sure we don't have to do too much to it.

"We just cleaned the windscreen and that's about all we did in service. The car is nice, its got some marks on the tyres but we're in good shape for tomorrow."

Darren Green and Wayne Smith finished in fourth position, having some highs and lows over the course of the Leg. "Parts of the course today suited us. There was a big variation in the types of terrain. The rocky stuff suits us, but the sand is no good," Darren said. "We backed up a lot today and didn't go flat out. We started off fast but about 70 km in we hit a rock and buckled the wheel. That made us reassess and slow down. The stages are a lot more rugged than they have been before. The hardest on the cars that we've ever seen."

Dakar-legend and Isuzu-pioneer Bruce Garland and Harry Suzuki are sitting in fifth outright after today, about 14 minutes behind the leaders. Bruce said it was a difficult course, and their game plan was also to stay cautious to keep their Isuzu D-Max intact.

"On the first stage today it was hard to find the track sometimes. But other than that we took it pretty easy. The second stage was easier. They were still fairly tight, but there were some long fast straights. We staked a tyre on a rocky section, and then just changed the air filter in the service but apart from that all we did was to clean the windscreen and have a look at everything. "We'll do the same tomorrow. There is still a lot of racing to go."

In the Bikes, Todd Smith on a KTM managed to finish on top of the motos despite nursing a sore shoulder from yesterday and thanks to some on-form navigation. "I thought the stages were still pretty tight, but much faster today. They were a bit more predictable, so I guess that makes them faster. I went past Jake, Ben and Rod on the last stage because they took a wrong turn. "I had a hole in the radiator, so I had to fix that in the service. I didn't get a chance to do much else," Todd said.

Yesterday's leader Ben Grabham, also on a KTM, had a strategy for a steady day. It proved successful, finishing just over a minute later than Todd. The Marathon Day rules do not allow moto tyres to be changed during the stages, so Ben said he wasn't trying to be fast to minimise wear on his tyres.

"The guys who were going too fast have shredded theirs so it will be interesting to see how they go tomorrow. I don't expect to be in the lead after today, because I was riding conservatively. Today's stages were long and faster, and a bit more open. Yesterday was more technical. I was first on the stage, and so I was trying to set the pace and slow things down a bit, thinking about tomorrow," Ben said.

Rod Faggotter on a Yamaha WR450F had an eventful day, getting caught twice in wire on the track. "For the second stage we were riding single file and chewing dust. The wire slowed me down in the morning and I would have dropped some time because of that. I was riding to conserve the bike, in service I just did and oil change and changed the air filter. I dented a rim, but there is not much you can do to fix it and anyway its fine. Its going to be interesting to see how some of the bikes last tomorrow."

Paul Smith was the leader of the quads on his Honda TRX700XX, ahead of John Maragozidis on a Interceptor 850 by 32 minutes.

Competitors will have to face a second Marathon Day tomorrow as the event travels from Leonora to the historic goldfields town of Coolgardie, once the third largest town in Western Australia.

Considered one of the world's great endurance events, the Australasian Safari is travelling from Southern Cross in the wheatbelt through to the historic Western Australian goldfields, desert, rugged bush and coastal sand dunes, finishing at Esperance.

2010/09/20 | 14:44 CET | EDITOR: MR/HS/PITTAWAY











Rally dos Sertões RESULTS: Overall results CARS & TRUCKS SS05 on Thursday | 29.08.2014 03:33 | NEW




Rally dos Sertões RESULTS: Overall results BIKES & QUADS SS05 on Thursday | 29.08.2014 03:24 | NEW




Dakar Rally 2015: The real Odyssey before - or how to be at the Start in time. | 29.08.2014 02:40 | NEW




Defender Challenge VIDEO: Impressions of the series by Bowler Rd 4 Wales | 29.08.2014 01:31 | NEW




Defender Challenge: Rd 5 of the series by Bowler takes place this weekend. | 29.08.2014 01:27 | NEW




Rally dos Sertões: Honda HRC riders finished first part of the marathon stage. | 29.08.2014 00:47 | NEW




Rally dos Sertões VIDEO: Mitsubishi Petrobras Team crews SS04 Wednesday | 28.08.2014 17:10 | NEW




Rally dos Sertões VIDEO: Official no comment rally video of SS04 Wednesday | 28.08.2014 17:08 | NEW




Rally dos Sertões: Top 10 cars mixed after hardest stage - Spinelli still leader. | 28.08.2014 16:33 | NEW




Rally dos Sertões PHOTOS: Impressions from the Marathonrally in Brazil (77). | 28.08.2014 04:57 | NEW




Rally dos Sertões: Two X-Rally NWM Ford Ranger in good 2nd and 4th position. | 28.08.2014 04:48 | NEW




Baja Poland: Poland to welcome 112 competitors in Baja Poland this weekend. | 28.08.2014 02:20 | NEW




Rally dos Sertões RESULTS: Overall results CARS & TRUCKS SS04 Wednesday | 28.08.2014 01:56 | NEW




Rally dos Sertões RESULTS: Overall results BIKES & QUADS SS04 Wednesday | 28.08.2014 00:44 | NEW




Rally dos Sertões: KTM’s Marc Coma hangs on to overall lead in dos Sertoes. | 27.08.2014 23:48 | NEW




Rally dos Sertões: Paulo Gonçalves clinches victory in SS04 - the longest stage. | 27.08.2014 23:32 | NEW




Desafío Inca: German manufacturer battle - X-Raid Mini vs SAM Mercedes CC | 27.08.2014 19:26 | NEW




Rally dos Sertões RESULTS: Overall results CARS & TRUCKS SS03 on Tuesday | 27.08.2014 18:33 | NEW




Rally dos Sertões RESULTS: Overall results BIKES & QUADS SS03 on Tuesday | 27.08.2014 18:29 | NEW




Rally dos Sertões VIDEO: Mitsubishi Petrobras Team crews SS03 on Tuesday | 27.08.2014 17:55 | NEW




Rally dos Sertões: Both Ford Rangers reached top speeds above 175 km/h. | 27.08.2014 17:07 | NEW




Rally dos Sertões VIDEO: Onboard with X-Rally Ford Ranger Baumgart / Cincea | 27.08.2014 16:35 | NEW




Rally dos Sertões: Stagewin for Toyota´s Varela in S3 but Spinelli still leader. | 27.08.2014 16:19 | NEW




Rally dos Sertões: Goncalves - "Hope to ride hard without making mistakes" | 27.08.2014 16:00 | NEW




Rally dos Sertões: Marc Coma wins again in Bikes and remains the leadership. | 27.08.2014 15:35 | NEW




Rally dos Sertões VIDEO: Mitsubishi Petrobras Team crews SS02 on Monday | 26.08.2014 19:14 | NEW




Rally dos Sertões VIDEO: Official no comment rally video of SS02 on Monday | 26.08.2014 18:57 | NEW




Baja Poland: X-raid with four Mini All4 Racing - chase for World Cup continues. | 26.08.2014 17:21 | NEW




Baja Poland: Overdrive Racing with five Toyota Hilux and Nasser Al Attiyah. | 26.08.2014 16:45 | NEW




Rally dos Sertões: Mitsubishi´s Spinelli / Haddad the new leader in the cars. | 26.08.2014 05:17 |




Rally dos Sertões: Gonçalves wins SS2 in Bikes but Coma still overall leader. | 26.08.2014 05:02 |




Rally dos Sertões PHOTOS: Nice impressions from the first days in Brazil (79) | 26.08.2014 04:53 |




Baja Poland VIDEO: Official trailer of the Baja Poland FIA CC World Cup 2014 | 26.08.2014 04:32 |




Donaldson CC: Test of character for the teams at South African Vryburg 450 | 26.08.2014 03:49 |




Rallyraid: Kamaz Master legend Ilgizar Mardeev tragically died in an accident. | 26.08.2014 03:09 |




Rally dos Sertões RESULTS: Overall results CARS & TRUCKS SS02 on Monday | 26.08.2014 02:30 |




Rally dos Sertões RESULTS: Overall results BIKES & QUADS SS02 on Monday | 26.08.2014 01:59 |




Rally dos Sertões VIDEO: Driving onboard with Overdrive Toyota Hilux of Verala | 26.08.2014 01:46 |




Rally dos Sertões: Honda´s Paulo Goncalves wins second stage in the bikes. | 26.08.2014 01:28 |




Rally dos Sertões VIDEO: Official no comment video of SS01 Sunday (crash) | 26.08.2014 00:56 |




















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