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OiLibya Rally 2009 Special-Newssection (FIA Cross Country Worldcup)

This is the single-news section of the special of the OiLibya Rally 2009, second round of the FIA Worldcup for Cross Country Rallys. To see all news please use the link under the article or navigate with the left main-navigation.

OiLibya Rally: Nothing wrong except the result.

Today's stage from Quaryat to Oueni wasn't quite as brutal as expected meaning speed was the necessary ingredient. Eric's Trophy Truck is fast, up on power and down on weight from last years rally, but unfortunately not enough to make the difference. The team's strength comes when the going gets tough and the navigation is complex.

Today, with a smoother than expected course, and lots of dust being kicked up by the Pro-System Racing Chevrolet for the chasing pack to follow, it was always going to be an uphill struggle. Still, Eric and Alex are not quitters and they pushed hard from the start.

Eric remarked that the BMWs of Terranova and Novitskiy looked mightily quick on the stones as they were overtaken by both. However, Eric kept pushing and caught the BMWs further down the road when their speed seemed to have caused both tire problems that Eric on his Open Country M/T-R tires did not suffer.

Having jumped into the lead on the road, they were then passed by Schlesser whose buggy is a veritable speed machine. However once again, the teams strengths saw them pass Schlesser as an error of navigation by the buggy left Eric in the lead on the road again.

Eric was forced to drive a little slower than he would normally to conserve his gearbox as they could not afford to lose this but despite this they were still, the first car to reach the finish.

The frustration for Eric and Alex came as cars they had passed on the road, arrived at the finish with slightly better times pushing Pro-System Racing into 8th place on the stage after all the cars were at the bivouac. The team did nothing wrong, the car had no mechanical problems, but the stopwatch doesn't lie. While a little disappointed with the result, Eric was pleased the car is in good condition for the remainder of the rally and in his post race interview commented, "To also announce that we still did not know the least puncture, contrary to all our adversaries. Thank you in Toyo for its excellent products!" Maybe he was tempting fate, but not one puncture the entire rally is pretty astonishing.

The rally has now moved back to Tunisia where the rest of the rally will be held. Tomorrow's special offers 275 km of varied terrain for the competitors, with canyon tracks, small ergs and dunes before arriving at the famous Ksar Ghilane oasis.

2009/04/30 | 19:28 CET | Editor: MR/Pro-System/Rita Konya

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