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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: Craig Lowndes and Ben Grabham are the big Winners.







First-time offroad competitor V8 Supercar driver Craig Lowndes from Australie has proved himself an all-round motorsport champion with a first-place win with co-driver Kees Weel in the 2010 Australasian Safari which finished Saturday on the beach in Esperance, Western Australia.

Lowndes and Weel finished one hour and 15 minutes ahead of the rest on the final day of competition following a week of strong driving, managing to steadily increase their lead gained in Leg Three. Luck was on their side on Leg Two when the third stage of the day was cancelled and they were having clutch problems that they were able to fix overnight.

"I´m delighted to win my first attempt at Safari. We stayed out of trouble and the beach sand was something I was more familiar with from my practice runs" Lowndes rold. "We got the Colorado airborne a couple of times on the dunes and it was a really great day."

This will be co-driver Kees Weel´s second Safari win, having won his last event in 1995. Weel said Lowndes had done a great job, given he´s never competed with a co-driver before. "He did well at taking instructions and got us through the tough treed stages over the week. It´s great to have another Safari win."

Second-fastest in the autos were Darren Green and Wayne Smith who´s 1999 Nissan Patrol held out to get them to the podium. "We could do another four or five days in the car, but I´m glad its over" Smith said. "We had an overheating problem on the dunes on the first stage and Bruce Garland passed us. Dunn passed us as well, before they launched it into a gully. On the beach we broke a power steering belt and had to change it on the transport between the two beach stages, and managed it with only thirty seconds to spare."

Today´s sandy conditions suited long-time Dakar and Safari competitors Bruce Garland and co-driver Harry Suzuki who powered home in their Isuzu D-Max Diesel, winning three of the four stages today. "It was a fun day and for once we didn´t get any punctures!" Garland said. "The dunes and the beach were a lot nicer than the trees we had the past few days, it was a beautiful spot to finish and the diesel loved the sand."

Bathurst´s Ben Grabham made it a trifecta for himself and the CPW KTM Racing Team when he took out first place the moto division today. Grabham was in the lead in all but one Leg this week, finishing convincingly today an overall 17 minutes ahead of the next fastest Todd Smith.

"It was a fun way to finish, riding across the sand dunes and the beach, although getting through the sand was a bit tough. After all the hard work, it´s a big relief it´s over not just for me but also for the mechanics and the whole team.

Todd Smith completed a gritty performance placing second despite nursing a shoulder injury sustained on the first day of competition and having his brother Jacob out of the event with a broken ankle. "It´s been a pretty rough week, but I just don´t like to give up on things. You finish what you start. It will take me about a month to recover, but now I´m now looking forward to having a party ­ otherwise known as Leg 8!"

Bike manufacturer KTM was also a winner today, with third fastest finisher Matt Fish completing the trio of moto placings. "I didn´t finish last year and it´s my fourth attempt at a podium finish, and I´m finally there. I had a great day today and the beach finish topped it off."

Paul Smith was the victor of the quad bikes, having a great run all week. He lead the quad riders from Leg 2 and kept his lead for the remainder of the event. In the true spirit of Safari, Smith towed in his fellow quad competitor Colin Lawson for the last four or five kilometres of the stage. Lawson was stuck in some soft sand and with moto rider Richard Mayfield, they dug him out, tied on his bike and brought him into the finish.

"It was my most memorable day on Safari. I´ve finally won one and we then had to get through the dunes and get Colin out and the bike was so hot, Col pushed the bike for part of the way ­ it was a huge day!"

The Australasian Safari provides an ideal training ground for riders and drivers competing in the world-famous Dakar Rally event. International riders Annie Seel from Sweden and Ze Helio from Brazil both agree that the conditions experienced in the Australasian Safari are comparable with the gruelling terrain and lengths of the Dakar legs. Seel is competing in Safari for her second year and Helio for the first time.

Helio, who placed 11th in the 2009 Dakar, and 18th in Safari 2010, said this year he didn´t put big expectations on himself and just wanted to understand the terrain. "You need a different way of driving for each particular type of ground and I found it less slippery here than what I´m used to in Brazil. I like this rally so much and it is the best practice for Dakar," he said.

Seel, who placed 15th today, said the beach dunes and sand were the perfect way to finish, and she forgot about her mis-navigation yesterday. "With this kind of riding I could do another week. The long days and technical nature of the stages definitely make me feel I now have the stamina for another Dakar," she said.

Proof of the difficulty of Safari is the number of competitors who manage to reach it to the finish. The event commenced with 112 participants on the Prologue Day and only 64 participants finished the trally, a 40 per cent attrition rate.

Over seven days, the event has traversed Western Australia, starting on the coast in Perth, travelling east through the wheatbelt to the historic goldfields, then south to the beautiful beaches of Esperance.

An official podium finish on the town´s foreshore saw each of the remaining competitors cheered back into town, celebrating the fact they had finished this gruelling event.

Considered one of the world´s great endurance events, the Australasian Safari has travelled from Southern Cross in the wheatbelt through to the historic Western Australian goldfields, desert, rugged bush and coastal sand dunes.

2010/09/25 | 13:18 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 | NEW




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




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




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




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




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




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




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




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




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




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




















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