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Optic 2000 Tunisia 2007 Special-Newssection (FIM Cross Country Worldcup)

This is the single-news section of the special of the Optic 2000 Tunisia Rally 2007, 1st round of the FIM Worldcup for Cross Country Rallys. To see all news please use the link under the article or navigate with the left main-navigation.

Optic Tunisia: The 2007´edition of the Tunisian Rally started in France

The Rally Optic 2000, edition 2007, recieved a warm and royal reception in the excited town of Brignoles. Here for the technical and adminastration scrutineering, in the Vabre sporting Complex before leaving fore Marseille and the luxury cruise boat "Danielle Casanova" for the island of Corsica. Marc Coma (KTM), David Casteu (KTM Gauloises), Janis Vinters (KTM), Gerard Farres (KTM) and Marek Dabrowski (KTM) for the bikes; Jean-Louis Schlesser (Buggy Schlesser), Christian Laveille (Proto Dessoude), Philippe Gache (Buggy SMG Monoplace), Eric Vigouroux (Chevrolet), Paul Belmondo (Nissan Pathfinder) for the cars, these rally champions will be let loose on Sunday morning, on the southern part of Corsica.

Schlesser... Trials. After his podium in the 2007 Dakar, Jean-Louis Schlesser, four times winner of this rally, starts in a strong position. "We’’ll be testing a new suspension and even if the stage in Corsica might not be to our advantage, overall the going should be good for us this year. Of course i’ll have to watch out for Christian Laveille. Here at Brignoles there is a real atmospher of rallies gone by, with the amateurs taking a primary place."

Phillip Gache going alone. As he did on the Dakar, Philippe Gache will be Going it alone, in his monoplace SMG Buggy. He will be testing the modifications made to his buggy; as in, the suspension, gearbox and bodywork.

Marc Coma reminisses. Big favourite on the bikes, the Spaniard Marc Coma (KTM Repsol) returns with a smile to the Optic 2000 Rally. "In 2004 on this rally, i started my career with an encouraging second place. On top of that this will be my fisrt serious rally since my accident on the Dakar, a chance to get back on top."

Eric Vigouroux goes West. Behind the wheel of his Chevrolet Trophy Truck, Eric Vigouroux hopes to be upfront in this Optic 2000 Tunisian Rally. "After Dakar we’ve made some adjustements. Notably some space in the back for a spare transmission, just in case...."

Paul Belmondo, driving T2. At the wheel of one of the three Team Dessoudes Nissan Pathfinders, Paul Belmondo along with Jean-Pierre Strugo and Laurent Rosso will be the driving forces in this T2 (production series), all the time being wary of Jean-Pascal Besson in his Mercedes ML...."

David Casteu with a thought for Isidre. Second on the Dakar 2007, second last year in Tunisia, searching for his first win, on this his new career direction. "I’ve done it, i’ve sold my shop to concentrate solely on competition. My target win of course. With a thought for my friend Isidre, who had a terrible accident last weekend." Turned professional, team leader of KTM Gauloises and Team manager of his own structure for two amature riders, David Thiollier and the French/ Uraguayan Laurent Lazard (finally renouncing the 450 catagory, but concentrating on his 660).

Christophe Declerck double potted. Three time winner of this Optic 2000 tunisian Rally, Christophe Declerck (Yamaha Raptor 700) is the favourite for the quads. This rider from Dunkerque starts this year with a revised engine and exhaust system. "This last minute system change shoould give me an increase in power. I’m going for the win on the quads and a top ten place in the overall bikes. Never the less i’m wary of the Italian Montico on his 450.

Two specials on Corsica. For the first time in the history of the Optic 2000 Tunisian Rally the first day is to be spent on the island of Corsica. A loop of 176 km Propiano-Propiano, split into two, twenty or so km each one, with an assistance park on the marina at Porto Vecchio. Before returning on board the Cassanova for Tunisia.

Tunisian Desert Tracking. With about thirty teams on the start, the beginnings of this new event looks promising.This parallel competition will give the competitors a real African taste of a rally that offers, at the same time, competition and safety with a posting of results every evening based on the curerent rules of rally regularity.

2007/03/31 | 17:55 CET | Editor: MR/HS/NPO

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