|SA-Dakar Rally: Gerard De Rooy "You can’t win much in such a short stage".|
Slowing down is not Gerard de Roy’s thing. During the 5th stage of the Southamerica Dakar rally 2012, the driver of the short green Petronas-Iveco proved that he can also win using the hand brake.
"Sometimes you have to do it, but it’s not easy" he said after the stage. De Rooy and his crew strengthened his lead in the general rankings with this stage victory.
"There were even puddles in the dunes", said De Rooy. Due to the rain, the normally powdery white dunes of Fiambala were rock-hard and much easier to cross. "This doesn’t mean that they were easy. Some of them were very steep and one even precipitous; that one was tough, it didn’t end."
The Dutch Junior of "Dakar Veteran" Jan de Rooy went easy on consciously. The mechanics worked whole night on the truck as there was a problem with the cooling of the Iveco.
"You can’t win much in such a short stage, you can only loose. But it’s not easy to slow down, certainly not when you have your rhythm. But I didn’t see anyone in my mirrors, so I can also win when I use my hand brake."
Iveco driver Hans Stacey had a problem with just one dune. "I didn’t make it the first time, I tried it in a low gear but it didn’t work. I had to go back, make a turn and take a new run-up before I went up the dune with full speed. A round of the house and that takes a few minutes." Stacey finished 4th, behind Miki Biasion who took a splendid 3rd place.
Pep Villa, who had to stay behind de Rooy, Stacey and Biasion to render service if necessary, finished 9th. The Spaniard faced lots of difficulties last year with "Fiambala", but this time he took the dunes without any problem.
"The sand was very odd", he said "I've never seen this before. Hard en still soft. It was only a short trial (shortened due to the rain; red.) of 200 kilometres, but it was hard work."
2012/01/06 | 15:13 CET | ARTICLE: MR/SY/DE ROOY