Face to Face The Dakar Magazine January 10, 2005 Everyday feelings of those who are not specially famous but who dare the challenge and give a dream for those who stay behind... Paul Green - Environmental Drains - 449 Richard Huzzey: "We ...
Face to Face
The Dakar Magazine
January 10, 2005
Everyday feelings of those who are not specially famous but who dare the challenge and give a dream for those who stay behind...
Paul Green - Environmental Drains - 449
Richard Huzzey: "We thought it was harder than that!"
Big smiles and sparkling eyes. Visibly the experience has been rather good for Richard Huzzey, 37 years old and competing in his first Dakar Rally, as the co-driver of his mate Paul Green. And everything seems to be going well for the two Portsmouth Brits ever since the start from Barcelona. Just before the stage around Atar, they were 45th of the overall standings. But more importantly, they haven't suffered the slightest big problem since the beginning. The only hiccup concerned the warm diesel that put the gas pump on fire just before arriving in Atar and that forced them to repair during the rest day. But nothing serious, and most of all nothing that can stop their enthusiasm.
"Before the start, we didn't know exactly what to expect. We had just driven a few kilometres in the sand, during a testing week in the Ténéré desert last summer, and everything went well. But we thought that the Dakar was much harder and tricky, with bigger dunes, harder tracks and a higher pace. But in fact, the only problem is the length of the stages. Actually, I think we over estimated the difficulty of the race."
An opinion which is not exactly shared by driver Paul Green, who hadn't even seen more than Morocco for his first participation last year because of a stupid electrical problem which they couldn't repair. A big disappointment for this 51 year old civil engineer. So he immediately decided to compete on the next edition, but with a sort of 'MacGyver' on his side, Richard Huzzey, a farmer and very good mechanic. "I never went to Africa, so it was a good opportunity to discover it. Although the pace is a little too fast to enjoy the landscape!"
And now, the n°449 crew are looking forward to big dunes. "We are so impatient to drive more dunes, because the car is wonderful to drive in the sand. It's really an excellent toy and we have such fun. In fact since the start we were only stuck once for a few minutes."
The two friends aren't however considering themselves like Peterhansel. "Even if we're in good position of the overall standings, we don't really care. Our unique goal is to see Dakar and bring back as many memories as we could. In fact that's what's frustrating in this race. With only one edition, you capture memories for your whole life, but on the moment you can't enjoy them, because you're much too tired."
Anyway, their fine performance is good news for all the Rally Raid UK team, who saw their founder Paul Round quit the rally during the Tidjikja stage.