PHARAONS INTERNATIONAL CROSS COUNTRY RALLY
1-9 october 2006
STAGE N.3: EL DAKHLA - FARAFRA
TRANSFER: Km 0
SPECIAL TEST: Km 402,55
TOTAL: Km 402,55
The start is near the El Dakhla bivouac among the first rounded dunes that are easily covered. Rapidly you will find yourself driving an off-track very slow but bumpy up to km 24. The CAP from km. 25,89 points towards N-W on a sandy ground passing along the small Erg that takes us to the CP1 (km.57,78) near the asphalt road to Farafra km. 60,88). The way turns bumpy and slow again, following for about 80 kilometres an approximate CAP towards West on an off-track that slowly becomes sandy presenting some passages among dunes until you reach CP2 (km. 145,41).
Then, crossing a sandy ground (gassy)the way, very fast and spectacular, tends towards N-NW until it reaches CP3 (km.218,54), point of assistance and motorbike refuelling, located near the road to Abu Minqar. We continue towards NW and then N towards CP4 (km. 254,58), passing among dunes and canyons made of small eroded hills immersed in the sand. After CP4 the way continues towards SE through an unchanged landscape, passing on a sandy hollow that gradually takes us on a very bumpy track with some small fesh- fesh hollows. At km 301 you will find the great falaise that ends on a sandy plateau on which at Km. 302,69 we will cross the asphalt road to Farafra. Now again a fast and short distance on the sand will take us on a very bumpy and at times not clear track that goes down a great ouadi towards N until Km. 322.
The track becomes now clearer and marked and surely faster until reaching CP5 (km. 372,51)on a ground made of sandy dunes and some bumps. The CAP changes again direction towards NW on a very fast sandy plateau until the finish of the stage near the Farafra bivouac.
Farafra, 5 october 2006
Monterde is taking the head
Technical in its first part and then faster for the rest, the 3rd stage of this Pharaons International Rally took the caravan back from the oasis of Dakhla to the one of Farafra on a varied ground of approximately 400 kilometre through the heart of the white desert. A timed special also putting the accent on the navigation skills of the pilots, allowing some competitors to show themselves. That is how the Chilian Carlo De Gavardo (KTM) clinched his first stage victory in front of the other KTM from Casteu, Viladoms and Coma. The car race saw the second consecutive victory for Jose Luis Monterde (BMW X5), who took at the same time the head of the general cars standing, in front of the Russian Shmakov (Buggy Zil), victim of gear-box problems.
FARAFRA - About ten participants were missing the official register this morning at the start of this 3rd stage in Dakhla. Several bikers, tired or victims of mechanical problems, but also some cars and not the least! Compelled to take part to a WTCC race next Sunday in Valencia, the Alsacian Yvan Muller, second in the general classification, had to leave prematurely the rally after having shown a great potential behind the steering wheel of his Proto Dessoude.
The Russian Shmakov (Buggy Zil) was counting on this absence to settle his position at the head of the general standing after this stage. But, suffering some gear-box troubles, the pilot from Moscow had to reconsider his ambitions. Especially since his main opponent, the Spaniard Monterde, decided to attack properly in this third round. Keeping a very high pace all along the timed special, the well guided BMW X5 from Jean-Marie Lurquin signed its second victory in two consecutive stages, taking meanwhile the first position of the general ranking. In third position today, the Bresilian Paulo Nobre could have laid claim to a better result if a flat tire did not interrupt his race, shortly after CP3 (km 218). Fourth today, after a bad start due to a broken clutch the first day, the Hungarian Sandor Kis (Nissan Pickup) did not hesitate to waste time by pure gallantry. After having rescued the Italian biker Silvia Gianetti, facing an oil breakdown, he helped Prisca Taruffi to put her Nissan Navara back on its four wheels. Something to make Kis raised to the rank of. gentleman driver! As for the daughter of the ex-Formula 1 Italian champion, she continued with a rumpled car and a broken rear differential. In T2 category, Chraistian Lavieille (Nissan Pathfinder) keep going alone at the top position. Comfortably installed at the head of the production cars category, the official driver from the Team Dessoude Nissan France did a perfect race today in order to establish a little more his leader position. But the surprise of the day came from the amazing 5th position of Giacomo Vismara and his Iveco truck in the cumulated leg standing cars-trucks. A performance, which propelled him to the top 10 in the general classification.
In bikes, a navigation mistake has probably influenced the final result. After having started 3rd this morning, behind the two official KTM from Coma and Viladoms, David Casteu (KTM) took the wrong direction between CP4 and CP5, allowing Carlo de Gavardo (KTM) to overtake him and to reach the finish line in the company of the Spanish duo. The Chilian, former title- holder of the discipline, took advantage of the situation to sign his first victory in a stage of the Pharaons Rally. In the general standing after stage 3, Coma is still leading the category in front of Viladoms and De Gavardo. At the second position of the day, Casteu improved again his ranking of three positions to finally finish at the 7th place this evening. In the 450cc category, Francisco Lopez, not really at ease on the long fast tracks, is still signing the 7th time of the day and is pointing at the 6th position of the general standing, 1st of his category with about one hour ahead of the second 45o bike, the KTM from Oscar Polli.
-credit: jvd international