|Dakar Rally 2015: Canadian ALDO Racing now with Overdrive Toyota Hilux|
Following the 2014 Dakar Rally raid held last January in South America, the Canadian "ALDO Racing Team" made a major change, trading their Desert Warrior 3 prototype for a more reliable rally-built Overdrive Toyota Hilux pickup.
Designed around an FIA-approved tubular chassis built by South Africa-based Hallspeed Racing, the double cab Hilux was refitted with a Kevlar-Carbon bodywork and all the off-road rally-raid trimmings by Overdrive Racing in Belgium.
Following its arrival in Montreal from Europe in early April, the ALDO Racing team of expert technicians has been busy getting to know the new rally vehicle and customizing it for maximum ease of use for driver David Bensadoun and co-driver Patrick Beaulé, both from Montréal.
In order to be fully prepared for the 2015 Dakar Rally, the ultimate world rally raid event, ALDO Racing will test its new Tacoma May 7-8 in the Sonoran Desert of Mexico. The Sonoran is North America’s largest and hottest desert, covering large parts of the Southwestern US states of Arizona and California and Northwestern Mexico states of Sonora and Baja California Sur. The two-day test will be held near the Mexican border town of San Luis Colorado.
"Looking back, I must admit that we were a bid disappointed by the reliability of our prototype during the last Dakar Rally," said team driver David Bensadoun.
"The fact that we had to retire after only four days of the rally left us disappointed. Talking it over with my teammate Patrick Beaulé, we decided to explore new venues in order to improve our chances to score a better result in the 2015 Dakar Rally."
The two-day testing session in the Sonoran Desert with the new Overdrive Hilux is a prelude to the May 11-14 "NORRA Mexican 1000 Rally" - a rally-raid with bivouac stops each day - that uses roads similar to the November-held, non-stop Baja California rally.
“We chose the NORRA event because it is a North American event and at the end of each day, a bivouac stop will help the team chief mechanic Yvan Turcotte learn more about the truck performance," declared Patrick Beaulé.
"The Baja California rally is held five months later in November, and that would not have given us enough time to turn around and make crucial changes, if they are needed before Dakar. Our goal is a Top-30 at the Dakar and remains the same as last year until we reach it."
The ALDO Racing Team of David Bensadoun and Patrick Beaulé mid-term goal is to get finish result at the Dakar Rally in the Top-10, a task that seems almost unattainable for a privateer against manufacturer-sponsored teams. "I think that everything is possible and I have proofs from passed experiences," concludes Patrick Beaulé.
2014/05/07 | 11:54 CET | ARTICLE: MR/HS/BEAULÉ/DAVILA