• Iveco rally trucks again optimally prepared for the second part of Dakar
• Gerard De Rooy starts as the leader in the standings
It was a tough first week in Le Dakar 2014 and the start field has been halved. Only the truck category has the least dropouts. Of the 174 motor bikes, there are 83 still competing, 17 quads will start today and from the 147 cars in Rosario only 70 will be flagged away today. In the truck class out of 70 trucks still 52 are fighting for success. After a well deserved rest day, the teams will start today for the second part of Dakar.
“We had our first technical problems in the last stage. The day before everything went very well for us, but all the rest had some problems so that gave us the leading position. We didn’t push for the first week. We drove very safely and we didn’t have any punctures on the Specials, but many others had problems with the tires. Every time they lost fifteen or more minutes. We were not pushing the first week, but the second week is always very important. In the first week it is very important not to loose any time and in the second week you have to push. But now, we are not the one who needs to push, so we’re going to wait and see what they are going to do. We have a good fight; the Kamaz drivers, all five, well they are only four now, they all know how to drive fast. They always have their drivers in the top places, so they can play a tactical game and slow you down and take advantage of that, so it’s going to be hard, but my Iveco Powerstar performs faultlessly. Hopefully Hans Stacey can show his skills next week with the Iveco Trakker and maybe he can hunt the Kamaz drivers. I will need his assistance for sure”, said Gerard de Rooy in the bivouac in Salta, while the Iveco service team was preparing the trucks.
Today the race will restart with a connection leg of 114 kilometers, followed by a Special of 525 kilometers racing against the clock. Then we have to drive back some 100 km’s to the bivouac in Salta. First part of the Special is fast, followed by a difficult part with a lot of sand and then finally a rocky terrain, going to a great height, around 3500 meter with some peaks passing the 4,000 meters level.