Stage 1 - Buenos Aires to Cordoba Friday 1 and Saturday 2 January, 2010 Quotes of the stage: BIKE: David Casteu: "I had a great time!" - 003 "This morning, my mechanic said: 'We haven't done all this for nothing, so if you want to make an ...
Stage 1 - Buenos Aires to Cordoba
Friday 1 and Saturday 2 January, 2010
Quotes of the stage:
David Casteu: "I had a great time!" - 003
"This morning, my mechanic said: 'We haven't done all this for nothing, so if you want to make an impact, go on. For the bike, we'll see afterwards'. So, I attacked, attacked and attacked! I had a great time. Throughout the special stage, I kept concentrating on my steering, because riding is different on a 450cc: you have to be quick everywhere because it hasn't got as much boost. There were some nice long straight parts. I was riding at 150 kmph, but the bike held stable and is coping well. I hardly used any petrol. In fact, I had three times too much. It's the future in the making at this level. Riding is an incredible pleasure. You can put the bike wherever you want to!"
Marc Coma: "A good way to get back to business" - 001
"It was quite a technical special stage, and it's a good way to get back to business like that with the machine. In the end the stage was a bit shorter than planned, but seeing how hot it is, it was still quite tough".
Cyril Despres: "I had butterflies in my stomach this morning" - 002
"It was a warm-up, on a winding special stage that was very nice to ride. After several months preparing, you need to warm up and test the water. I had butterflies in my stomach this morning because on the last two Dakars, each time my first day was terrible. So, I'm really happy to have finished. The time I managed wasn't too bad, and more importantly, I didn't have any problems. As for the bike's speed, I reached 166 kmph, compared to last year when we could get up to 185 kmph. You just have to deal with it. We can't make up time on the others for the moment, but we'll claw it back later".
Nani Roma: "A good special stage for warming up" - 304
"In the end we were quite surprised by the time we achieved. But, I'm happy. We had a fright with the engine in the middle of the special stage and had to stop to make a few checks. But everything was running ok. I think it was an electrical problem, but since it was working, I preferred not to interfere with anything. As far as we're concerned, it's ok. It's only just the start. We haven't really had a battle with the VWs yet. There is still a lot of the race to go. In any case, it was a good special stage for warming up".
Stephane Peterhansel: "A very diversified special stage" - 301
"The middle of the special was magnificent, with some really green rolling valleys. There was one place where we skidded and got stuck between two mounds of earth. We were praying that nobody was right behind us. We lost quite a lot of time trying to straighten up because there wasn't much room. In any case, it was a great special stage, very diversified. We were close behind Giniel (De Villiers) at one point, around one minute or one and a half minutes, but that's when we spun. We'll have to wait to see what trends develop. Giniel is a driver who starts slowly. He didn't take any risks today, so his time doesn't say much. We know that in the winding and mountainous sections, the VW aren't quicker than us. Afterwards, when we'll be in amongst the dunes, we'll be needing an engine with plenty of torque and power. I reckon we'll be fine when that time comes around..."
Carlos Sainz: "It all worked out well" - 303
"For us, it all worked out well today. The only problem that we encountered was that we were driving in Robby Gordon's dust. I couldn't get close enough to activate the Sentinel. I think he heard us a couple of times however, but it was already very near the end of the special stage".
Vladimir Chagin: "I want to have a careful and controlled Dakar" - 501
"That's my 48th special stage victory on the Dakar? Really? I don't know when the 50th will come... We have to get through the mountains first. You never know when you're going to win, but I'll try to reach 50 victories and win this Dakar. Mind you, what's most important is avoiding problems and mishaps. After that, the results look after themselves. That's why first and foremost I want to have a careful and controlled Dakar. Being a favourite is flattering, and I'm delighted about it. I'm also happy about how this first special stage went. It was very different to the start of last year's Dakar. The timed sector to Cordoba was very quick and sporty. Tough, but good for driving. What's more, it wasn't very long and that allowed everyone a good start to the race".