|SA-Dakar Rally: First X-raid win - Quandt "Achieved our long-awaited goal".|
A dream came true for X-raid´s boss Sven Quandt: Stéphane Peterhansel celebrated his 10th Dakar win, representing at the same time the Mini All4 Racing - and the X-raid Team’s first triumph in the gruelling event. They started with the X5-BMW - and with the Mini and the retirement of Volkswagen the "way was open".
"We finally have achieved our long-awaited goal: Our first win in the Dakar Rally," beamed Team Manager Sven Quandt. "In this year’s Dakar, the Mini All4 Racing clearly demonstrated its outstanding potential and reliability."
Other than expected by many pundits, all the eight vehicles entered by the German squad - five Mini and three BMW X3CC - survived the entire event and made it to the finish in Lima. "Apart from our win, this is the biggest success for our team," added Quandt. "Our engineers and mechanics did a fantastic job preparing the cars on every single day, thus laying the foundation for this success."
"We have worked hard and for a long time for this win," said the Stéphane Peterhansel who now has got 10 Dakar wins under his belt. "With the Mini, we designed a competitive and reliable car. I want to thank the entire team for its hard work and support, both prior to and during the event."
The Mini All4 Racing made its Dakar debut in the 2011 edition of the gruelling event - in that year with the French pairing Guerlain Chicherit / Michel Périn in the cockpit. The small rally car quickly captured the hearts of the motor-racing enthusiasts but a crash during the roll-out on the day of rest of the 2011 Dakar forced the car into early retirement.
But just a few weeks later, in spring 2011, Peterhansel and Cottret secured the first win of the Mini - in the "Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge". In this event, their car still featured the classic red livery but from the Silk Way Rally, Peterhansel / Cottret raced the green Mini that soon should become their trade mark.
From 2011 to 2012, the number of Minis contesting the Dakar increased from one to five. Coloured green, yellow, orange, red and red/blue/white, they turned the desert into a colourful place. From the very first special stage and throughout the event, the overall lead was held by one of the Minis that also secured eight special-stage wins.
2012/01/15 | 22:38 CET | ARTICLE: MR/SY/XRAID/HS