|Dakar Rally 2014: Nani Roma und Michel Périn win the legendary desert rally.|
13 stages, more than 13,000 kilometers, one of the most gruelling Dakars ever – and in the end, the conclusion has to be: The X-raid Mini All4 Racing dominated the 2014 Dakar in unique style. For the third consecutive time, the Monster Energy X-raid Team won the Dakar Rally.
Following the wins in the previous two years, secured by the French pairing Stéphane Peterhansel / Jean-Paul Cottret, Catalan Nani Roma and his French co-driver Michel Périn made for the hat-trick, with their yellow Mini. And on top of that, the fans in Valparaiso, Chile, witnessed and all-Mini podium. Second place was secured by Peterhansel /Cottret in the black Mini, with Team X-raid driver Nasser Al-Attiyah and his Spanish co-driver Lucas Cruz securing third place.
Many pundits regarded the plan to contest the Dakar with 11 X-raid Mini All4 Racing as an unsolvable challenge. The Monster Energy X-raid Team and the X-raid Team, however, did not only succeed in making it to the finish with all the 11 vehicles but the entire team delivered in fantastic style, with the figures speaking for themselves: all the 11 Mini made it to the top 20, in the 2014 Dakar. Nine of them secured top-12 positions and as icing on the cake, the podium proved to be an all-Mini podium!
The extensive preparations in the run-up to the Dakar were the key to the Mini´s and hence, to this remarkable success, too. In numerous rallies and over the course of thousands of kilometres of testing, all the parts and components were tested regarding their solidity and reliability. Every single evening, a detailed checklist was completed on every single car and components were exchanged in defined intervals.
An effort that paid off, in the most gruelling off-road rally of the world: In the 11th stage from Antofagasta to El Salvador, for instance, all the 11 X-raid Mini covered a total mileage of more than 6.600 kilometers – without encountering the slightest problem.
For winner Nani Roma, the year 2014 represents a very special anniversary: 10 years ago, he won the motorbike ranking of the Dakar. In the following year, he already switched to four wheels.
With his win in the 2014 Dakar, he followed the footsteps of Auriol and Peterhansel and now is the only third driver who succeeded in winning the legendary event on two and four wheels. In the 2013 season, Roma already underlined that he would be a factor in the battle for the 2014 Dakar win: four rallies – four wins! Inter alia in events such as the Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge or the Ruta 40.
Roma took the lead on day three of the 2014 Dakar and defended it up to day 12 when he lost it for one day! And his co-driver, Michel Périn also massively contributed to this triumph. In the sixth stage, when everybody lost time while looking for a waypoint, the Frenchman found it at once, thus enabling Roma to open the major part of his gap on the rest of the field. For him, the Dakar win is an early birthday present: Périn will turn 57, tomorrow!
2014/01/20 | 20:09 CET | ARTICLE: MR/HS/SZLAPKA