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This is the single-news section of the news "Offroad & Motorsports". To see all news please use the link under the article or navigate with the left main-navigation.

Transorientale: Rally is going on from Astana (Kazakhstan)

Yesterday, the marathon stage proved to be extremely difficult. All the competitors, by common agreement and as is sadly traditional in such circumstances, reached the second checkpoint in the marathon stage. No clock, just another hurdle overcome. After CP2, they left the special event route and travelled together to Astana, the Kazakh capital. It was the greatest tribute that could be paid to Philippe Tonin and Xu Lang. The competitors then embarked upon a different, even longer journey.

Consequently, they didn't reach Astana until around 5pm. There, a huge crowd was waiting to welcome the Transorientale caravan, fittingly for an event like this. A host of television and radio stations and a prodigious number of journalists clustered around the car, truck and bike teams.

As the buggies and trucks passed, wonderment gave way to curiosity. The crowd only had eyes for these powerful monsters. Eric Vigouroux, driver of the Trophy Truck, summed up the reception quite simply: "Just as impressive as Dubai, and even nicer too".

As the arrival of the Transorientale coincided with celebrations to mark the town's tenth anniversary, the local authorities had set up a podium in the centre of town and laid on a range of entertainments. In this booming town, it was a time for conviviality and relaxation, after the sombre events of the previous day.

The Kazakhs certainly made sure that, celebrating the tenth anniversary of the country's new capital, and feting the participants in the Transorientale 2008.

2008/06/18 | 00:05 CET | Editor: MR/HS/Transorientale

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