|Pharaons Rally: Maurizio Traglio and Nissan celebrate their first stage win.|
The rally caravan arrives to Sitra after completing the longest stage of Pharaons Rally 2010. After a 435 km of special section starting from Abu Mingar´s bivouac, crews and riders are now next to the beautiful lake of Sitra to celebrate stage winners Marc Coma and Maurizio Traglio/Fabian Luquin. After yesterday problems on the sand, the Italian/Belgian crew gets its best result so far and scores the first victory of Team Tecnosport in Pharaons Rally 2010.
"It was a beautiful special stage" said the Italian. "The dunes were magnificent and there was lots of navigation though out the stage. As I have a great co-driver, we did not make mistakes and we obtained our first victory. This means a lot to us."
Meanwhile car crews claimed to have seen the most beautiful landscapes during a long special that took them to Sitra, Eric Vigouroux had some other misfortunes. The Trophy Truck was caught in the sand two times during the special, but not only that. They had two flat tires and expected to find a spare one at the assistance point, but unluckily the truck didn´t make it on time.
Jean Louis Schlesser keeps his comfortable first place overall, followed by Maurizio Traglio 01:37:30 behind and Japanese driver Jun Mitsuhashi is third, 01:57:46. "Arnaud is a great navigator" said Schlesser. "When everybody was going left, he told me to go right and not follow the traces. It wasn´t easy today, there was the possibility to fall after climbing cut end dunes."
Jun Mitsuhashi told: "It was hard to focus because the air nozzle was broken so my eyes were dried and it was very uncomfortable. Then, we had a flat tire 30 km before the finish. I rather prepare for tomorrow because it will be a hard day too."
For the Bowler-crew of Jerome Pelichet and Eugenie Decret the day was also succesful. "For us it was the nicest day because it was the first journey without any problems. We had one problem after the other from the first special but today it was great. We rolled quietly to avoid punctures and we are early at the bivouac."
The best Egyptian crew is the Buggy Cottel of Rahhala Racing. Omar Hani and Akram Al Sharif take the 7th place and are now 8th overall.
In the bikes, Marc Coma signs another stage victory, but the day was marked by the accident of Aprilia rider Gerard Farres. The Spanish crashed at km 288 and broke his right shoulder. The first one to arrive to the scene was the German Tim Trenker. As Farres´ Iritrack was broken, Trenker alerted the organizer to get medical help and then, the Spanish asked him to continue his race.
Other riders came to the scene and stood with Farres, who was shocked by the incident. Finally, he was evacuated in the medical helicopter to the bivouac before his repatriation to Cairo. "I stopped for Farres at km 288" said the Polish Jakub Przygonski. "I left the bike and went up to him. He said he was ok, he was conscious and he told me to keep going, so after that I kept thinking about the accident. It was a very fast stage. Sometimes it was necessary to slow down because of the dust. There were bumps and stones, so you have to be careful too."
After today´s result Chaleco Lopez keeps his leadership but Marc Coma gets closer. The Catalonian takes the 2nd position overall, 3´56´´ from the Chilean rider.
In quads, Patronelli keeps his fast pace and earns another stage win: Four victories in a row for the Argentinean in his first time in Africa. "After an accident you are more aware of the risk you take in races like that" he said. "For me it was a fast stage but the last kilometers were more complicated. The quad is well but I have to take care so it doesn´t get exhausted before the end of the race."
Tomorrow, the fifth stage of Pharaons Rally 2010 will take the caravan from Sitra to Siwa after a 412 km special stage.
2010/10/07 | 21:37 CET | EDITOR: MR/HS/BAUER