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This is the single-news section of the marathonrally.com news "Offroad & Motorsports". To see all news please use the link under the article or navigate with the left main-navigation.









PAX-Rally: X-Raid Team fields five BMW X3CC in Portugal.





The German-based X-Raid Team will support the second round of the Amaury Sports Organisation’s (ASO) new Dakar Series with five X-raid BMW X3 CCs. The Pax Rally starts in Lisbon on Tuesday, September 9th and finishes at the Algarve coastal town of Portimao on Sunday, September 14th. The event was introduced by the experienced French organising team, along with the Central Europe Rally that ran through Hungary and Romania in March, in place of the 2008 Dakar Rally that was cancelled on the eve of the start in Lisbon in January.

The first event in the series was well-supported by the top factory teams and the Trebur-based X-raid team has entered Qatar’s newly-crowned FIA Baja Cup champion Nasser Saleh Al-Attiyah, alongside Frenchman Guerlain Chicherit and Argentinean Orlando Terranova in three official cars, Portugal’s Filipe Campos in an X-raid Portugal entry and the Russian Leonid Novitskiy in an X-raid Russia BMW X3 CC.

Al-Attiyah and Chicherit again team up with regular co-drivers Tina Thörner and Matthieu Baumel. Jaime Baptista partners Campos on his home event and the Russian Oleg Tyupenkin sits alongside Novitskiy. Terranova will be accompanied by Alain Guehennec.

The X-raid team will be looking to continue a superb winning streak, which has seen Al-Attiyah take outright wins in four successive Baja events in Saudi Arabia, Italy, Spain and Hungary and clinch the FIA Cup for Cross-Country Bajas for the first time with one round still to run at the end of next month.

But the Pax Rally will be the first occasion that the X-raid team has competed against both the Mitsubishi and Volkswagen factory teams since the Central Europe Rally, round one of the new Dakar Series, at the end of March.

"We have been experiencing a run of good results this season and that is proof that we are moving swiftly in the right direction," said X-raid’s team director Sven Quandt. "The last time we came up against Mitsubishi, Nasser achieved a superb overall win in the Baja Spain, but this will be a totally different test against Volkswagen before the Dakar.

"Mitsubishi will not have their new car for this rally in Portugal, but the competition will be fierce and the outcome will give everyone a guide as to how we are progressing and who the main competition will be on the Dakar Rally in 2009."

The first liaison and selective section heads from Lisbon across the Tagus River in the direction of the overnight halt at Castelo Branco. The special will be around 150km in length in a total route of approximately 220km. The mountaineous section passes near Beira Beixa and winds its way through the Maçao, Vila do Rei and Oleiros districts.

The second leg on Thursday, September 11th heads from Castelo Branco to Benevente across the Ribatejo plains and includes around 230 competitive kilometres in a route the organisers advise will be around 450km. The section utilises trails near Vila Velha do Rodäo and the Alto Alentejo.

After an overnight halt at Samora Correia, the third leg on Friday, September 12th utilises a stage that had been planned for use on the Dakar Rally in January 2008. Around 190km of the day’s 240km will be competitive and the track passes through an agricultural region and property owned by the Portuguese Air Force. The finish of the stage will be in Alcochete.

The penultimate special on Saturday, September 13th takes crews from the Ribatejo plain to the Algarve region in the south. It is the longest special of the event - around 300km - between Alcochete and Portimao.

The final section on Sunday, September 14th is a short, fast loop stage around Portimao, taking in the popular tourist villages of Silves and Monchique to the north of the Atlantic coastal finish in Portimao.

2008/09/10 | 15:06 CET | Editor: MR/HS/X-Raid






















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