IT WAS A FANTASTIC VICTORY FOR CHALECO LOPEZ AND HIS APRILIA TUAREG 450 IN THIS FIRST STAGE OF PHARAONS RALLY 2010. THE CHILEAN HEADS THE CLASSIFICATION 5 MINUTES IN FRONT OF HELDER RODRIGUES AND 16 OVER MARC COMA. ALEX ZANOTTI IS THIRD IN THE STANDINGS WHILE GERARD FARRES IS SIXTH AND GRAZIANI IS TENTH.
EL RAMMAK -- Just as last year, the opening stage of the 13th edition of Pharaons Rally shines for Team Aprilia Giofil. Francisco "Chaleco" Lopez wins the stage with a gap of 5 minutes from Portuguese rider Helder Rodrigues. But above all, the Chilean rider succeeds to precede favorite rider Marc Coma for over 16 minutes. A whole lot considering that the Catalonian is riding his 690 cc bike.
Chaleco leaded from the beginning until the end. He was the 37th rider to leave the Giza Pyramids this morning and overtook 33 riders during the 366 km of the special section.
The outstanding victory of Team Aprilia Giofil is completed by the fantastic Alex Zanotti. San Marino's rider is testing the newest "light" version of the Tuareg 4.5 and quickly found a nice feeling on it, finishing the stage in the 3rd place, 13 minutes behind Lopez.
The other two men of the team managed by Filippo Assireli, Catalan rider Gerard Farres and Matteo Graziani performed well too. In his side, the Italian rider that hasn't been in Africa for the last two years, preferred to ride cautiously, obtaining the 10th place overall.
Tomorrow, the second stage will take riders to Bir Karawein after 353 km of special section.
Francisco Lopez: "It has been the very nice stage, and very fast too. I have taken the advantage of starting behind many riders, even if however I have made much attention to the changes of direction."
Alex Zanotti: "I found myself confortable with the new bike. The new weigh distribution is ideal and it helps in many situations. I did not think to that I was gong fast, but at the arrival I realized that I did a great stage."