|Mini Dakar Hardenberg: With highspeed through the Northern Dutch Forests.|
From Niels Hatzmann The "Dutch Offroad Championship" has long been a hidden treasure. 20 to 30 cars race six weekends each year, with the same enthousiasm as they show in Dakar. This years finest race was held on the 12th and 13th of November, with specials over 60 kilometers long through the fields, woods and villages around Hardenberg near the German border.
The "Mini Dakar Hardenberg" as it's called has already seen some big names. Matthias Kahle participated in 2010 with the SAM Mercedes 35CC. This year Tim Coronel brought his world famous electric McRae buggy for his first real race. Watch the trailer from the forthcoming DVD of the event on youtube [ HERE ].
The weapon of choice in the Dutch Offroad Championship is Land Rover based, preferably a QT/Bowler Wildcat, RRUK Desert Warrior or different kind of Tomcats. But Japanese cars are present as well. Last years' winner Vincent Thijs started with a factory built Mitsubishi Pajero Evo, this year the season goes to Rick Aarts racing a QT/Bowler Wildcat.
In Hardenberg the victory went to Arno Baauw, who races a home built Tomcat with 4Grip suspension and a 5.3 Chevrolet V8 engine. The regulations allow room for amateur teams to produce fast and competitive vehicles.
The "German Rallyraid Champion" Ingo Kaldarasch used the event to train with his new co-pilot Jule Haendschke and his G-Raid Lennson CC, a prototype based on a tubular frame with Mercedes G optic. Theodor Vockrodt from Aachen made it to a 15th place with his standard Mitsubishi Pajero V6.
The stages in Hardenberg vary each year. Last year a huge sandpit was part of the special, with tough downhill sections and loose sand. This year the special ran through the fields and some of the forests in the region, with a beautifull magnificent autumn sun shedding light on the racetrack.
In 2012 the Dutch Offroad Championship will see 6 races. The calendar is not yet available, but usually the season starts with a beach race near Amsterdam. All cars that comply with the FIA safety rules can enter. More information is available through [ nkoffroadracing.nl ] or [ email@example.com ].
2011/11/24 | 17:46 CET | ARTICLE: MR/SY/HATZMANN