|SA-Dakar 2012: Dessoude Proto- and Buggy-surprises at their 30th Dakar.|
In 2012, the French team Dessoude will celebrate its 30 years of participation in the Dakar. An anniversary which coincides with a real revival in the team from St Lô which enter this year no less than three new vehicles "made by Dessoude." Two Prototypes, "N011" and "Atacama" - and the new buggy Oryx Diesel participating for the first time in this great event. For André Dessoude, still as enthusiastic and passionate, these new challenges are extremely motivating.
"Our team will ramp up this year, with new vehicles and high quality products. We chose Christian Lavieille to drive the "latest", the Proto N011. A high tech car, up to the 2012 regulations with a 3.7l Nissan standard engine. Well balanced, it has a performance / weight ratio very interesting. A nice car and a good crew that will attempt to destabilize the BMW armada. And there will be a lot of work when you see the contingent entered by the German team.
The engine adaptation posed the biggest issues, but after the tests we conducted, we do not have any complex. As usual, we will run "carefully" and manage daily our race because the Dakar is never a simple matter. I am still very confident because in 2011 this strategy had paid and Christian finished eigth on a less efficient vehicle.
Second innovation, the "Proto Atacama" will be driven by Frederic Chavigny. I was positively surprised by the first tests. The chassis is really great and the car "easy" to drive. The goal for this first outing is essentially to finish the race. For Frederic, this edition of the Dakar marks its entry into the "big boys" category from T2 to the T1
The buggy Oryx Diesel two-wheel drive will also participate to its first Dakar. After the recent entry in the Silk Way, where we worked on the reliability and settings, including suspensions, I am confident because this buggy is performant. The set is very homogeneous and a good result is possible. Moreover, Thierry Magnaldi will be the driver. Thierry has a big experience in two-wheel drive category and he is able to adapt easily to the pace of the race.
Isabelle Patissier will be with us for the third consecutive year. On the buggy Oryx, petrol engine version, she will try to do at least as well in 2011. Isabelle knows her car to perfection. Always navigated by Thierry Delli Zotti, the crew is solid and experienced. Again, a very good result is not utopian, and I know these two will fight until the end.
Finally, Zhou Jihong will be driving the Proto N05 and will be navigated by a Chinese co-driver. Even if we know the car by heart, we must adapt. We will to teach them how to manage the mechanical and we will manage the crew on this demanding rally.
Apart from the five race cars, we will have five service trucks on spot, four T5 and one T4 truck involved in the race. These new vehicles represent a lot of investment both financial and human. I will start this year without pressure because whatever happens, this race is unique and it remains impossible to control all parameters. But I like these new cars and morale is good! "
Christian Lavieille / Jean-Michel Polato - Proto N011
The duo Christian Lavieille / Jean Michel Polato will start this new edition of the Dakar with a "factory" car. A brand new car made in the Dessoude workshops that seduce already the driver.
"I am perfectly conscious of how lucky I am to drive in this car and I want to sincerely thank André Dessoude to trust me again. It's a great car, well balanced. At the wheel, everything is "easy" and everything goes very fast. The engine is excellent and the car is simply amazing on rocky tracks. Its efficiency is very surprising. I felt comfortable right away and I really had pleasure when I discovered this new machine. But I know what we will have to face in a few weeks will not be a walk."
"On paper, we have a more powerful car than during last edition but the Dakar is the Dakar and we have to remain careful. We will have to be clever and "wise" because I think we will have to avoid many traps, including on the final stages. We have not raced yet with this car and it is currently difficult to compare with our opponents. We have many assets to exploit to get a good result ... "
Frédéric Chavigny / Jean Brucy - Proto Atacama
Frédéric Chavigny is a specialist on T2 category, but for next Dakar he will switch to the T1 top category on the new Proto Atacama. Winner of the T2 petrol category over the last three editions, Frederic, always navigated by Jean Brucy, must adapt to this new car to achieve his goal, discover Lima.
"The new baby looks good! The Proto Atacama is very nice to drive and in action seems to be very "sane". The first run was perfect and I felt quickly confortable. This beautiful Proto should give good results on a race that promises to be difficult, including during the last four legs. I would not be surprised that 65 to 70% of the crews entered in the race will not cross the Andes. Bye bye to T2 and bye bye to a potential podium. But I will manage my race in different way. And if in Lima we are in good position, I will not be disappointed. Surprises, good or bad, are always possible. Meanwhile, I'm very happy with this new challenge. "
Isabelle Patissier / Thierry Delli-Zotti - Oryx Buggy
Second in two-wheel drive category in 2011, Isabelle Patissier prepares her race. Thierry Delli Zotti, her co-driver and perfect mechanic, works on the details.
"Our advantage this year is to know the Oryx by heart. We know perfectly well what to do or not and are familiar with the reactions of the buggy. This point makes me more confident. Regarding the route, the sand, in all its forms, seems to be in the program. A buggy in the sand - if all goes well, it's great! But if we begin to be stuck, it can last for hours."
"It's quite "all or nothing". We will remain vigilant about these legs, probably very tricky. At the start, everything will be a question of dosage. On one hand, we must be patient, do not rush and on the other hand, we will not have to be so far on overall. What is certain is that we will not let go because competition should be fierce this year. I’m really happy to discover a new country, Peru. I’m dying to be in Argentina for the start of the race, but also for the atmosphere and hospitality of the people. "
Thierry Magnaldi / Francois Borsotto - Oryx Diesel Buggy
To control the new buggy Oryx Diesel, André Dessoude turned to a familiar driver to the rally raid world, Thierry Magnaldi. After a successful career on two wheels, Thierry has built a solid reputation in the two-wheel drive category. A "specialty" he will have to exploit on this new buggy.
"I'm very happy! I never drove for André Dessoude and when he contacted me about the project with the Oryx on the Dakar, I was deeply honoured. I saw the Oryx during last Silk Way rally and the car seemed to be great. It has more torque and power than the petrol version. I think we can work effectively on that product to make it evolve further. Anyway, that's what I will try to do by taking advantage of my experience of the 2 WD to move in the right direction."
"I am very motivated and sharing this experience with Francois (Borsotto) will probably be more efficient. I drove on the Dakar "South American version" in 2009, but I realize that the route has changed since then. Peru will probably be the trap. I've rode a motorcycle in the late 80s (Incas Rally) there and I still have good memories of this country. But on the Dakar, my judgement may be very different! My goal: to finish the race and not disappoint Andre Dessoude who trusts me."
Zhou Jihong / Liao Min - Dessoude Proto 05Proto N011
After the Silk Way Rally, Zhou Jihong will now have to face the challenges of the Dakar. At the wheel of the Proto 05, the Chinese driver will have to be patient to expect to reach Lima. A reliable car that can make an excellent result. The crew will may be suffer from a lack of experience but if they listen to advices of the "boss", the way to Lima is wide open.
2011/11/17 | 12:47 CET | ARTICLE: MR/SY/DESSOUDE