|Dakar Rally 2013: Hope for Top 10 finish goes up in flames for HRX Ford.|
In the longest stage the Dutch Riwald Dakar Team was robbed of a top 10 finish. A bend at km mark 423 was sharper than the roadbook predicted. Erik Wevers and Fabian Lurquin went wide and ended up on the side in the dry grass with their HRX Ford Racing Lancer.
The glowing brakes set the grass on fire and soon after the car started burning until almost nothing was left. Opposite to this drama Gert Huzink marked a beautiful 13th place in the long battle over 593 km.
Erik and his Belgian co-pilot were on their way towards one of the strongest performances of this Dakar. With a little over 150 kilometres to go to Cordoba, the Riwald pair took firm control of the eighth place. Until that corner came. The gentle left bend also showed a sharp left part, which was not mentioned in the road book.
The HRX Ford slid off the road, landed on its side, whereupon the tragedy occurred. Erik and Fabian got out of the HRX Ford without injuries, but had to watch how their rally car completely burned down.
"There are no words for what happened today" said Erik Wevers. "We watched how the fire developed, it came actually quite slow. The car could have been saved by the fire brigade. But this is the Dakar. Here is everything different."
Amidst all disappointment Gert Huzink and Eugenie Decré made their best performance so far this rally. The Dutch/French pair gradually worked their way up during the 593 km stage: 23th at the first waypoint, 15th at WP9 and thirteenth at the finish. The good day result ensures the remaining Riwald team of a 29th place in the overall ranking.
2013/01/15 | 11:13 CET | ARTICLE: MR/HS/RIWALD