Dakar: Day six "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... Pierre Paillas - 081 Mission Almost Accomplished For Paillas After withdrawing from...

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...

Pierre Paillas - 081

Mission Almost Accomplished For Paillas

After withdrawing from the rally in 2002, Pierre Paillas had one dream : to finally make it to the Lac Rose arrival in Dakar. The race decided otherwise. With a sad look on the face the Frenchman explains : "Just after the second CP, I turned back and saw a truck, 80 metres away. I therefore decided to go on the left to let him go past. I didn't see him go past me so I turned around and that's when he hit me. He caught my wheel and pulled it on a few metres. I went rolling on the ground. My pants were completely ripped and I ended up in my underwear. I was at over 100km/h".

Luckily the fright was bigger than the injury. The rider who wasn't able to start the 2001 edition because of a cancer, finally only suffered a severe bruise. Devastated by the withdrawal, he doesn't yet know if he'll start the next edition.

Added to that, the accident occurred on the day when he was supposed to give school supplies to children in Ouarzazate. Indeed Paillas created a fund called "Meilhards a Dakar" "to help African countries". In 2002 he gave supplies to a school in Dakar.

This year, they had decided to help Morocco. A few hours after his crash, he was able to use an assistance truck to give out thousands of pens and notebooks to around 250 pupils of the city. "It was good to see all these smiles !"

One night after his crash, Pierre was still devastated but... started talking about trying once more to finish the Dakar...

Erik Gallardo - KTM - CORONA - 121

A Mexican On The Dakar !

On the other side of the Atlantic, especially in Mexico, the Dakar rally is not quite as popular as in Europe. One man has decided to change things : his name Erik Gallardo. "In Mexico the Dakar is unknown. Very few people are interested in motorsports. Only football has attention back home. But it's getting better, especially with me being here for the first time". This KTM dealer in Mexico City wants his country to know more about rally raid.

To fulfil his passion and dream, things were however not so simple. "It really wasn't easy to prepare the Dakar, to find sponsors and all... The problem is that no-one knows the rally in Mexico, so when you ask for a check to a sponsor, it makes things harder. You have to explain what your project is first".

His discovery of the Dakar was, like for many newcomers : brutal. First of all because of little technical worries in Europe. "Everything is a bit complicated for the moment.

The bike suffered electric problems", he admitted in Castellon. Added to that, the Mexican has to cope with these problems on his own. But that certainly doesn't scare him, on the contrary. "I have no assistance. I'm my own mechanic. Actually that's what I prefer. I'd rather make it to Dakar completely on my own. That's the goal and it would be fabulous."

The overall is very far form his concerns. "The other guys just go so fast I can't believe it. Now I have to learn how to use the road book because I'm not used to navigation".

-aso-

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Series Dakar