|Sertoes Rally: Polish Rafal Sonik to start with ATV at Brasilian Rally.|
Dakar rider and ATV leader of the World Cup Classification, Rafal Sonik is going to race in the 18th Rally dos Sertoes. He is to fight for the points in the FIM World Cup Classification against the world’s most skillful riders. The fourth round of the FIM World Cup is going to take place between 10th and 20th of August. Already 155 teams from 11 countries (Argentina, Chile, Uruguay, USA, France, Belgium, Poland, Venezuela, Portugal, Republic of South Africa and Brazil) have confirmed their attendance.
As usual, the rally will set off in Goiania, Goiás, where the "Super Prime" prologue will take place. This year, the finishing line is in Fortaleza in northern Brazil, 4486 km from Goiania. 95% of the route of the rally were modified for the needs of this year’s edition. The route consists of 10 stages going through 6 Brazilian states: Goiás, Minas Gerais, Tocantins, Maranhão, Piauí and Ceará - in four different regions of the country.
Organizers consider this route more diverse and also more difficult than those of the previous rallies. Riders will be confronted by variable special stages demanding comprehensive technique and flexibility. What is characteristic of this rally is diversity of the stages. Typical South American route vary from fast gravel sections to technically challenging passages in the desert.
The route runs through numerous roads crossing agricultural areas and narrow, winding mountain paths. Admirers of typically off-road attractions will certainly be glad to cross rivers and swamps and struggle against tricky rocky parts riding both up and down. Several sections involve riding through Brazilian villages. For safety reasons, radar zones with speed limits were located at spots indicated in the roadbook.
Weather is likely to be another source of exciting experiences. It is winter now in Brazil and riders must be prepared for low temperature and even frost. On the attendance list, there are the world’s top teams. It will be Rafal Sonik’s first time at Rally dos Sertoes. The Polish rider is fully aware of the fact that in Brazil he has to be ready for any type of challenging routes.
"I heard a lot of comparisons to the Dakar Rally" says Rafal Sonik about the preparations for Brazil. "Maybe it's not that long, but it's definitely as difficult as the Dakar. The hardships don't scare me, quite the opposite - they’re very motivating. I'm more and more focused, and for the last few days before I go to Brazil, I'm going to concentrate on my psyche. Nobody would compare this rally to the Dakar rally if there wasn't anything to it - so the level must be similar. I'm happy to be going there, I'm really extremely glad that I decided to race. I'm obviously a little worried about some bits, but the sense of unease accompanies any sports challenge, I guess."
The 4486 km of the rally’s entire distance consists in 10 stages, in which special stages take 2366 km. The longest stage, from Balsas to Teresina measures 653 km (183 km of special stages). The 6th stage, called "Marathon" is going to be the greatest challenge for the competitors as no assistance is to be allowed. Following the organizers’ decision, this stage was shortened significantly in order to enable participation of truck drivers.
You can follow the race of Rafal Sonik on the World Cup blog on [ www.atvpolska.pl ] or the official website at [ www.rafalsonik.pl ].
2010/08/02 | 18:08 CET | Editor: MR/HS/SKOCZ