PHARAONS CROSS COUNTRY RALLY
SEVENTH STAGE: BAHARIJA-CAIRO
TRANSFER: Km 3,97
SPECIAL: Km 300,74
TRANSFER: Km 94,80
TOTAL: Km 399,50
Only one assistance point for this stage back to Cairo. The start is the same of stage 2 and 5 and -- like this last one -- we proceed with CAP 13 up to the "passport ascend", after which we get downhill in the nice sand flow on the other side of the mountain in order to reach the plan.
We keep first over a CAP South and then over a CAP East, in order to skirt from South the Baharija oasis. The ground is sandy, little wavy, traces are well visible. At km 30.12 the CP1, change of CAP at 680x00b0 in order to ascend over a plan with a stony ground with traces in all directions.
At km 47.80 we are inside a quite rocky oued, careful not to touch the ground with the bottom of our car. At Km 79.19 after the piquet, the big dune of Abu Mukarri starts and we follow it up to the "pylons" where we find the assistance point.
The first chain of dunes is not exactly a stroll, after which we take a valley quite open toward North, traces in many directions, continue to climb over dunes chains on your right going in our direction. Even if this is the last stage, these dunes are definitely not to be underestimated, some are steep at the exit and the sand is not always nicely flowing.
Be careful at km 105.50: some hard sand tongues can be dangerous if taken in full speed. At km 129.51, the CP2 with assistance point and bike refueling, after which we take the "lonely tree track" that we find at km 151.84. It's a well traced track, fast and wavy with many bumps and jumps, good fun, but this requires much care at driving and challenges mainly your vehicle suspensions.
Some change of direction when approaching road crossings; be careful not to mistake at km 170.45 and at km 175.60, while it's impossible to mistake at km 291.15 as the crossing is next to CP3. Some oued crossing and series of bumps over the next km, be careful at a series of diversions and road crossings, we're getting closer to Cairo and the area is more attended.
The arrival next to the Cairo -- Baharija road after 300 km of a selective sector, the last of this rally, but not the least challenging. Then 95.43 km of transfer we'll take us to the Pyramids for the deserved fulfillment of our fatigues.
DESPRES, THE TWELFTH PHARAON
Cyril Despres doesn't let fall the 12th Pharaons Rally victory, ended today at Giza's Pyramids. The french champion precede a great Luca Manca, winner of the stage, while in the fight for the third position Paolo Ceci don't recaptures polish Przygonski. Anyway Ceci is the winner of 450 before Rodriguez and Pain. With this victory Despres graduated absolute champion with an advance stage. Among the cars Pelichet/Decr0x00e9 don't let fall the victory before Tonetti/Tonetti, hanged back because of many problems. Visy/Bourquin complete the podium monopolized by Wildcat. The today's stage goes to the two driving-wheels of Abdelhamid Abouyoussef.
CAIRO -- Go back to Cairo after a week passed in the wonderful western desert, being dipped in the caotic traffic and in the perpetual smog cloud that stagnate on the egyptian capital is the little price to pay to cut the finishing post of Pharaons Rally, but the show gave by giza's Pyramids that are the background of the arrival arch is something priceless. A joy that Cyril Despres felt first, deserving winner of the JVD International twelfth edition race. Daniele Cotto and Marco Bucci welcomed at noon the motorbike's winners, with Despres on the top followed by Luca Manca and Jakub Przygonski as squired.
Despres was missing the Pharaons victory on his immense palm: he didn't came in Egypt since 2004, the year of the tragic death of Richard Sainct. His name can now been added to Coma, Meoni, Sainct and Roma. That's why Despres victory has been even more important, more felt, but never certain. Above all after the first stage where he had a 14 minutes delay. Then he enforced all his talent, going up of two legs and then controlling the situation.
Luca Manca was really well preapared for this Pharaons : the sardinian pilot made a great round, always among the first with the icing on the cake of today . 6'40 detach from Depsres that teached him really a lot during this Rally. The fight for the third position, that was seeing the polish Jakub Przigonsky and Paolo Ceci detached of one minute at the eve, finished in favour of the young polish.
"Dragged" at the beginning from Despres, Jakub made a really fast stage, taking also some risks, but managing to let Ceci behind him. Helder Rodriguez and Oliver Pain follow Ceci both in the absolute and in the 450, while Fabrizio Mugnaioli concluded seventh preceding a crazy Francisco Lopez. The chilean sparkled for the all round, he wons two stage, and without the problems that keep him at a stand for two hours and a half during the third stage he will be certainly between the protagonists.
Among the 13 quads the incredible Camelia Liparoti awarded the victory before the team mate Lionel Laine and the italian Giovanni Oliva.
Among the cars, today we haven't had any fight between Pelichet/Decre and Tonetti/Tonetti. The two italians, father and son, remained blocked in a ditch. De Lorenzo twins first and by Michel Visy after helped them. They loose precious minutes paving the way to Pelichet. Seventh stage has been a catwalk for Mido Abouyoussef, the strong egyptian pilot that today won with two minutes on Pelichet. Third place for Aldo and Dario De Lorenzo, before Roberto and Nicola Tonetti. 120x00b0 Pharaons podium has been monopolized by Bowler Wilcat, the small english cars that amazed the Pharaons : Jerome Pelichet and Eugenie Decr0x00e9, after two third place during the lasts Pharaons Rally can rejoice for the absolute victory got with sixteen advantage minutes on Tonetti. Michel Visy and Philippe Bourquin complete the podium, even with a five hours detach.
Absolute fourth the South African crew Al Muhna/Alsanad, before the bests between the egyptians, El Shami/Elhamawi. Twins De Lorenzo are sixth before El Erian/Ali Etman and "Mido" Abouyoussef/Mahamoud
Tomorrow evening, at the Intercontinental Hotel, will take place the official Award Cerimony of the 12th Pharaons Rally.