14 Jan at Pink lake in Senegal finished tenth anniversary of the rally-marathon “Africa Eco race”. It is symbolic that exactly 39 years ago ended as the first in the history of the “Dakar”. But the biggest rally-RAID of the planet for ten years in South America, and Africa became the arena of the less prestigious and global competition, founded by former racer Jean-Louis Schlesser.
In 2018, the race was declared 90 participants, 58 of whom made it safely to the finish line. Traditionally the last day did not decide the 12th stage was a mere formality – 292-kilometer route to the Pink lakes of the participants overcame without scoring time, and the results were recorded on the penultimate day.
Unfortunately, for the first time in 2015 in any of the categories there are no Russian winner. The team “KAMAZ-Master”, as you know, decided not to go to Africa, and Dmitry Agoshkov took the 18th and last place in the truck category, Vladimir Vasilyev could not defend the title of the current winner in the class of SUVs. For 2/3 of the race Vasilyev and his co-driver Konstantin Zhiltsov confidently controlled the situation, but, alas, a technical issue at the eighth stage led to the loss of 1 hour and 22 minutes. On the remaining three stages, the crew of G-Energy was making up for lost time, but behind the winner Mathieu Serratore buggy still made 1 hour and 7 minutes. However, Vasilyev and Zhiltsov took second place, ahead of three hours became the third Frenchman Pascal Volume.
Russian-Ukrainian crew, Denis and Dmitry Krotov, Zero BMW won the race in seventh place, and the crew Suprotec Racing consisting of Andrey Rudskoy and Evgeniy Zagorodnyuk finished in 14th place.
In the category of trucks predictably won by Gerard de Rooy, which this year chose “the Dakar” race “Africa Eco race”. Dutchman on Iveco was out of reach for the opponents for all 11 fighting stages and ahead of Tomas Tomecek on Tatra 5 hours and 13 minutes. For comparison of the level of competition: in 2012 at the “Dakar” De Rooy won with a lead of 51 minutes, and at five o’clock then fit all the first five, whereas in 2016, the first ten riders shared 4 hours and 55 minutes and the breakaway Dutch racer was a little more than one hour.
The best among motorcyclists was Italian Paolo Cecchi on a KTM, ahead of nearly an hour and a half of the Portuguese Miguel Angola Oliveira.
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