|Desafio Ruta 40: Cyril Despres officially opened the race during heavy rain|
The Argentinian "Desafío Ruta 40" had its days of scrutineering for each one of the crews and vehicles before the start of the fifth edition of this competition. The rally began on Sunday, April 6th with the officially start-ceremony in the Civic Center in San Carlos de Bariloche - here the rally is located until Tuesday, April 8th.
The rain was present at the beginning of the day but as hours went by the weather got better. Dakar-winner 2013 and new Peugeot-pilot Cyril Despres officially opened the race on the podium with the Argentinian flag. "I feel amazed by the geographic characteristics of the area, and the excellence of the services offered to visitors," Despres told. "This rally is ideal to prepare for the Dakar Rally."
The race will open the Dakar Series season as well as the Argentine Championship of Cross-Country Rally. It will count on 88 participants among bikes, quads, and cars and it will visit the cities of Zapala, Malargue and San Juan.
Well-known starters in the bikes (40 starters) are Javier Pizzolito (Argentina, Honda), David Casteu (France, KTM, starting together with the French Thierry Domenach and Charles Monier) or Chilenian Daniel Gouet (KTM), competitors in the bikes are coming from Argentina, France, Spain, Peru, Colombia, Uruguay and Bolivia.
Next to 27 quads there are also 21 cars, here we can see many Dakar-teams like the two Tamarugal XC-crews with their SAM-Mercedes and Toyota FJ Cruiser, the two Colcar Mercedes prototypes, the Great Wall proto of 4wd Jaton Racing, the legendary Paneus-buggy or the Yacopini-Toyota crew.
With a total of six stages over a distance of 3,376 kilometers, there will be plenty of opportunities to find out who the top dog of the increasingly competitive pack of the continent's best drivers and riders is.
The stages of the Desafio Ruta 40 2014
SS 01) 07/04/2014 - Bariloche – Bariloche - 365,53 kms (timed)
SS 02) 08/04/2014 - Bariloche – Zapala - 357,49 kms (timed)
SS 03) 09/04/2014 - Zapala – Zapala - 357,49 kms (timed)
SS 04) 10/04/2014 - Zapala – Malargue - 409,52 kms (timed)
SS 05) 11/04/2014 - Malargüe – San Juan - 232,57 kms (timed)
SS 06) 12/04/2014 - San Juan – San Juan - 106,43 kms (timed)
2014/04/07 | 04:55 CET | ARTICLE: MR/HS/DES