Dakar: Day 10 "My Dakar" statements

Be A part of the Legend Everyday feelings of those who are not specially famous but who dare the challenge and give a dream for those who stay behind... Cyril Raynal - RSP RACING - 031 Doing it For The Little One Being a privateer doesn't...

Be A part of the Legend
Everyday feelings of those who are not specially famous but who dare the challenge and give a dream for those who stay behind...

Cyril Raynal - RSP RACING - 031

Doing it For The Little One

Being a privateer doesn't mean not competing for the overall. Cyril Raynal is a perfect example of that. His first Dakar in 2003 was a success. 35th overall and 2nd of his category. An achievement for this 31 year-old biker, used to motocross competitions. Eighth of the prologue in Clermont-Ferrand, he finishes first privateer, reassuring before the real start for his high ambitions : "to finish in the top 30 !"

But after the European part of the rally and a stage in Morocco that allows him to stay on target, Cyril faces in the stage between Atar and Tidjikja incidents that could have sent him immediately home. "I first dislocated a shoulder because of a bad fall. Luckily I was able to put it back in place and carry on. A few kilometres later however, it got really painful. I was devastated. All my ambitions were fading away as I finished outside the top 60".

The birth of a child, just before the start of the rally, makes him forget his problems.

Cyril is a father since the end of November. "Immediately as I got back to the bivouac, I called my girlfriend. I really needed it. She talked to me about the 'little one'. It helped a great deal. I should actually be sent pictures very soon."

The next day, for the longest special of the rally, between Tidjikja and Nema, Cyril managed to gain positions and earn precious minutes lost a day before. Getting to the Lac Rose among the best privateers can again become a realistic goal. "I'll have to stay focused until the end even in the final 5kms".

Not only is this Toulouse native a competitor, he also knows how to stop when needed. When he caught up Qatari driver Nasser Al Attiyan who was out of fuel, he didn't think twice and gave him 12 litres so that he could finish the stage.

Cyril now knows that "the four toughest stages" are behind him. After three rest days, the young father wants to give everything he has "for the people who support me in France" and especially for "the little one".

Jean Charles Pujol - AUTO SPORT CARAIBES - 349

Doing it For The Kids

Everything sounded harder for them before the rally even started. Coming from their little St Martin rock in the French West Indies, Jean-Charles Pujol and Philippe Lopez had to fight for their project. Added to the normal budget for a car in the Dakar, they had to finance the transportation across the Atlantic, all the way to France.(4000 euros by car). On an island of 20 000 inhabitants, finding a sponsor is not exactly easy. Despite all these efforts and after finishing the longest stage between Atar and Tidjikja, Pujol and Lopez had to retire the following day. The reason : a tight budget that prevented them of having a good enough car for such an event. "We drove for 50kms but the sand was too soft and the engine temperatures would increase dramatically. We kept on stopping for it to go down. With great sadness, we decided to return to where we came from. It took us 3 hours".

However, Jean-Marc Pujol was still hanging around the Nema bivouac, two days later. The will to carry on, even if it wasn't in the competition, remained. "The first reason is that we had to get to our assistance vehicle and because the two past stages were marathon stages, we were forced to make it to Nema. But most of all, it is because we have a little funding operation that we wanted to continue."

Indeed, contacted by a fund called 'Act for Senegal', Jean-Charles and Philippe had collected supplies from the schools in St Martin and the south of France to give them to villages in south-east Senegal. "The organisation therefore allowed us to carry on in the T5 category (assistance vehicles). It was impossible not to make it, we had to do it for the kids. Added to that, it allows us to stay in the Dakar atmosphere, to be on the bivouac every night. It's better than going straight to Dakar."

-aso-

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Series Dakar