|Dakar Rally 2015: The real Odyssey before - or how to be at the Start in time.|
The Dakar in South America - good for American Teams! Really? Some rallyfans were wondering last November during the Dakar shipping-ceremony in Le Havre (France), why US-American Robby Gordon was shipping his service-cars and -equipment from Europe. Built in Europe? No. Parking in Europe? No. Let us tell a special story of the Mexico-based "El Martillo" Team... and why logistics sometimes is more difficult than expected...
By El Martillo Team: Many of the followers and off road / rally fans around the world could be asking themselves: Why is September El Martillo Racing’s deadline to send the race car to the Dakar? Almost three and half months before?
Good question, let us explain the challenge for a North American team: Sending the race car, equipment, tools and support vehicles to be on time at the start line of the Dakar in Buenos Aires, Argentina, January 4th.
Last year, when the logistic to send everything to Argentina was discussed the team was wisely told by a former Mexican Dakar finisher: "One of the biggest challenges of Dakar, is to arrive at the start line." That was and is the truth.
As many may know, the Dakar-organizer ASO offers, as part of the entry fee, transport from Le Havre, France, to Argentina, by cargo ship. This represents a big help for the teams in saving logistics, delays, customs and for sure, budget. Also to be considered is the inventory needed for the customs in every border crossing (states of countries) during the trip. Can you imagine the amount of scrubs, tools, spares and articles to list?
No Joke: For all these reasons it is better for El Martillo Racing to ship all the team’s equipment from Mexico to France, which also requires perfect timing to meet with the ASO ship. The deadline to be in Le Havre is November 18th.
As one of the few North American teams, there are quite a lot of options to send stuff to "the old Country". Finding the best one is the challenge. To do that, there are facts to consider: Timing, safety, logistics, cost and reliability. Last year our Dodge Durango flew from the US to Argentina due to the tight agenda. This year it will go with the rest of the stuff.
The options are the following - Ship from Mexico to France, this can be done two ways
From the Pacific: This will have to be from Mazatlan, Sinaloa, or Manzanillo, Colima. This would also imply to ship from Los Cabos or La Paz to Mazatlan first. Then drive to Manzanillo (if needed) to navigate south to the Panama Canal and cross the Atlantic to France. Logistic. Time consuming. Reliable and safe?
From the Gulf of Mexico: This would require to cross the Sea of Cortez, drive all across the country, getting into the harbor of Veracruz; then ship from there to France. Logistics. Cost. Safe? Reliability?
Other options are available shipping from the Unites States.
California: This option represents a drive up the peninsula and ship from Long Beach, to sail south to the Panama Canal and cross the Atlantic to France. (This was the option used last year for support vehicles and equipment). Time consuming. Logistics.
Texas: Drive from the tip of the peninsula to Houston, ship all from the Gulf of Mexico to France. Logistics. Cost. Reliability?
Florida: Drive all the way to Miami from coast to coast with all the equipment and ship to France. Logistics. Reliability.
Making a wrong decision about this could result in not being on time in France to the appointment with the ASO ship and tragically miss the Dakar. Therefore, the team is in a critical decision moment. But, this is the Dakar, right?
2014/08/29 | 02:40 CET | ARTICLE: MR/HS/EMR