Silk Way Rally: Series Thursday report

D-2: A TASTE OF RACING Before a day planned for technical scrutineering and administrative checks on Friday, the crews have progressively arrived at Saint Petersburg and have started to get a taste of the atmosphere^a SAINZ, ALREADY...

D-2: A TASTE OF RACING

Before a day planned for technical scrutineering and administrative checks on Friday, the crews have progressively arrived at Saint Petersburg and have started to get a taste of the atmosphere^a

SAINZ, ALREADY BEHIND THE STEERING WHEEL

The morning was busy for the four favourites of the race who made a short 100-kilometre trip outside Saint Petersburg for a shake-down session in their Volkswagens before really taking on the action. Carlos Sainz was therefore able to make last minute checks and make sure everything was in order on the latest version of the Race Touareg. "We drove around fifty kilometres on a rally-cross type terrain just to make sure everything was working. The changes made mainly concern small details. For example the cooling is better", explained the title-holder when he returned to Saint Petersburg.

THE SILK WAY UNDER THE SPOTLIGHTS

For its second edition, the race has reached an even bigger dimension on a media point of view. The event will be broadcasted in 183 countries. The TV footage of the rally will be seen on 40 television channels (vs 32 in 2009), among which will be Eurosport that covers 58 countries and will broadcast a 13 minutes daily program on the Dakar Series race. Along with the news and photo agencies, written press, radio, and web sites, media from the five continents will be represented on the race by a total of 85 journalists.

AN IMPERIAL WELCOME

Before getting into the thick of things on the tracks on Saturday morning, the crews registered to take part in the Silk Way Rally will be invited to a reception in the prestigious residency of the St Petersburg government. The drivers will be welcomed by Mrs Valentina Matvienko, governor of the city at the heart of the Kamennyi Island where several residencies were built for the imperial family until the XIXth century. The visit of the most prestigious buildings of the city will continue the next morning on the occasion of the team presentation ceremony in front of the splendid Ermitage Palace where several thousands of spectators are expected to witness the start of the adventure.

DE ROOY, ON THE BIVOUAC SIDE

Gerard De Rooy who seriously injured his back last year on the final stage of the Silk Way Rally had considered returning behind the steering wheel of his truck for this 2010 edition. But wisdom guided him to patience; the Dutchman will indeed wait for the next Dakar to battle it out with the Kamaz. "I went through surgery just under a month ago to get rid of the pins that were placed on my back in September 2009 and my doctor said it was slightly too early to compete again. I will therefore focus on recovering physically until January and work on the preparation of my new truck. Here in Russia Hugo Duisters and Pep Vila will take care of testing it. It's a lot better to do it in racing conditions rather than going for test camps in Tunisia or Morocco. I actually don't really need to drive to know how the team and the car are going".

-source: aso

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Series Dakar
Drivers Carlos Sainz , Hugo Duisters , Pep Vila