Dakar: Day 13 "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... Anne-Marie Jobin - FEMMES DU MONDE - 281 Dakar's Angels Out of the 190 competitors...

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...

Anne-Marie Jobin - FEMMES DU MONDE - 281

Dakar's Angels

Out of the 190 competitors still in the race after stage 9, a special pair comes as a surprise. Who would have thought, during the rest day, that Anne-Marie Jobin and Florence Bourgnon, two ladies and new to the Dakar would still be in the race ?

With a common project, it was out of the question not to make it on Monday the 12th of January. Indeed this Telefonica Dakar was the opportunity to attract media attention on the production of Karité nuts in Burkina Faso.

Anne-Marie Jobin explains: "Our mission is to help the women to produce more, avoiding the difficult process consisting in transforming the nuts in butter or oil". For that, the two women have created a fund called "Les Femmes du Monde au service des Femmes de l'ombre" (women of the world helping women in the shadow) that collects money to buy mills and crushers. Making it to the rest day is a big step for the project. Around 50 Burkina women, on the bivouac were given their first mill. "It's a good result but we know well that it's only a drop in the ocean. When we saw their faces during a mill demonstration, it was very moving".

About twenty mills will follow in the upcoming months. Anne-Marie has lived in Africa for 15 years. Her experience of the everyday life will help to follow up on this project.

Indeed, she will make several trips to Burkina Faso to make sure that the mills go to those who really need them. She is helped by Brother Paul, a priest she met "24 years ago. He Baptised my son".

Alongside their project, Anne-Marie and Florence are managing a solid race. To make it to the shores of the Lac Rose doesn't seem as an impossible task for them.

"At the beginning, every dune was a test. Florence is an excellent navigator and has an excellent physical condition". According to the course, the steering wheel goes from one to the other.

Florence drives on the laterite sections. Their first mission accomplished, these ladies have to make it to Dakar : a way of making their project even stronger. "If our sporting performance is at the height of our project, it would be perfect for the years to come".

Pascal Ferrand - QUAD + - 903

Ferrand : "Nothing Can Stop Me Now !"

Saturday, 20h00, Bamako bivouac. Pascal Ferrand looks devastated. His face is pale and eyes are red. He just rode for over 30 hours in the "hell of Mauritania", during the stage between Tidjikja and Nema. Totally down, he thinks of retiring. "I was exhausted like never and I've already managed quite some performances (climbing up to Machu Picchu in Peru). It's quite simple : since three days, I've spent 60 hours out of 72 on my quad. Add to that the fact that I didn't eat for 48 hours. Something completely crazy". After a meal and a good night's sleep, Pascal will be back on the road. "Nothing can stop me now from getting to Dakar. Unless my engine breaks down."

This physio has already done quite a few Dakars in the Groine team assistance. He took care of many 'stars' such as Schlesser or Meoni but underestimated the rally course. "Having seen the other side of the race, I thought I was ready for anything. But to be honest, I was surprised. More by the difficulty of driving a quad than the course itself". The tracks left by the trucks for example add to his physical performance, a technical difficulty. "The quad isn't wide enough and that makes things exhausting". Born in the Auvergne area, he left the 'Grande Halle d'Auvergne' full of emotion. Despite difficulties on the course, he analyses his Dakar as a performance. "I remember 1986 when I went to the start of the rally in Paris, under the snow. It was magical. Since then, I went on my own way and being here with my old heroes is enough to make me happy. Only if I get to Dakar… of course".
    Pascal Ferrand

-aso-

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series Dakar