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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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Croatia Trophy: Water, winching festival but relaxed atmosphere on Sunday.







Rallyreport by Robb Pritchard: Seeing monster 4x4s race in places it's hard to even walk is impressive enough but last night the campsite was busy with another type of race. Sparks flew, welders flashed and hammers were wielded as teams worked through the night to fix their cars.

Yorkshire guys Karl Frost and David Needham were helping their Norwegian friends to repair their winch (I've never seen a Gigglepin beaten with hammers before) Most impressive though was Peter Whitman's crew who as I came in were poised around the engine bay with fire extinguishers at the ready.

"You might not want to stand just there," Peter suggested. Their engine problems had been traced to something in the fuel and they'd stripped the head off the big LS engine to expose the injectors to be able to check the flow. Running ahead with the winch rope is one thing but listening to the three guys all suggesting ideas and recalling relevant past experiences to get to the root of the problem was tea work at it's best.

And team work was what Sunday's Trophy day was all about. Crews were divided into teams of 4 according to the leaderboard and sent into a muddy pool at the bottom of an abandoned quarry. They had to winch each other down the sheer bank and then two cars raced around the side while the others waded through the water and got winched back up the other side.

It was more a display for the spectators than anything else but all the teams did themselves proud so there wasn't any mishaps to applaud, just a group of men (and one woman) making what looks like the impossible possible.

But the fun and games ended abruptly at dusk as everyone gathered for the night stage briefing. If extreme off-roading is hard in the full light of day the darkness adds yet another element to test the teams. Over breakfast this morning I spoke to a few of the teams.

"It was hard to find the way," Germany's Jurgen Meier said. "And we had a few little problems with bolts and things... but actually, it's a bit early in the morning to be asking questions!" he smiled.

A little more active was Peter Whitman who was bashing his wheel rim with a large hammer. "We started 16th and came in 10th so we did OK," he said. "But with all the lights we have it's no different than driving in the day, actually." his co-driver Adrian Turner said, "But at night you can't see all the little whippy branches and they keep catching me in exactly the same place on my lip!"

With the back of their car in pieces it looked like Stefan Mallia and Alistair Caruna from Malta were in the middle of some major repair work, but actually changing te break disks was just routine service. "At night the co-driver has to pay a lot more attention to the route," Stefan explained. "But the off-road wasn't that hard. Moderate, I would say."

And busy with little details like drilling the right diameter holes in the dodgy thermostat was Jim Marsden. "With all the stop starting I didn't drive so well in the Trophy day," he said.

"The collective times from the group sections and then the individual stage get added together to give your start position for the night stage so we only started 7th... and then we got lost at just the second junction. But but the time we got to the big mud hole we were first on the road which we were pleasantly surprised with. From there we pushed on really hard and I think we won the stage... but we're not too sure yet."

As I mentioned before there are not up to date results here, but the relaxed atmosphere is actually part of the appeal of the event. Two days ago Jim Marsden was leading and I would say that after the night stage he has increased his advantage. The important thing is that everyone is enjoying themselves, laughter rings out over the breakfast tables, the coffee is unlimited and the sun is shining.

Later today is another hard roadbook stage and I hope to get a better idea of the overall positions.

2012/05/02 | 15:36 CET | ARTICLE: MR/SY/HS/PRITCHARD











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




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




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




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




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




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




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




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




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




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




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




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




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




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




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




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




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




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




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




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




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




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




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




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




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




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




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




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




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




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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