10-Communiqué

THE FINAL CONFRONTATION

More sand, more dunes :  today’s route went over some of the same sections as the day before, but in the opposite direction.  For around one hundred kilometres, there were plenty of dunes to cross (of varying lengths) separated by plateaus, vegetation, camel grass and dry lakes… A colourful day, which was, of course, superb !

The second part of the route was faster, with some winding passages and soft sections.

This final timed stage kept all its promises, as did the second edition of the Africa Eco Race…

 

AND FOUR FOR JACKY LOOMANS ! JEAN-LOUIS SCHLESSER PERFECT WINNER OF THIS SECOND EDITION …

Between Tenadi and Saint Louis, the 204-km special stage was far from being a simple formality. Jacky Loomans, more on form than ever, took advantage to claim his fourth stage win, ahead of … Jérôme Pelichet, by just five seconds !  A victory that the Belgian driver dedicated to his grandson, who celebrates his birthday today ! As for Jérôme Pelichet, he may not have been able to add a stage win to his career record, but the second place overall delighted him, especially as back on the third stage, he was ready to retire due to engine problems… The real joy, however, will be for tomorrow when they reach the Rose Lake : “It will be the first time for Eugénie, and as for me… I haven’t seen it for a very long time !” Jean-Louis Schlesser is now shaping up to be the double winner of the Africa Eco Race : « Another beautiful stage… We were driving with François Lethier, but at one point he got stuck and we could not really risk losing too much time.  Yesterday’s overheating problem cost us a lot, and if the problem had reoccurred, our first place was under threat.  But François has a good lead over Mido, who is 4th overall. »

Further to serious problems with the deflating – re-inflating system yesterday, the blue buggy lost a lot of time.  Like yesterday, Pelichet Sr worked hard, while enjoying himself.  A fine family success within Team Raid Lynx !

A popular competitor with fine skills behind the wheel, ‘Mido’ was once again enjoying himself on his favourite playground.  Fourth overall, and plenty of satisfaction at having completed a fine race.  With his navigator Mahmoud Nour El Din, the Egyptians never faltered. Just like Gilles Florin with the Cotel Buggy, which today surfed over the dunes with particular efficiency …

In the trucks, Hungarian driver Miklos Kovacs claimed another win in his Scania, ‘sliding’ towards the Rose Lake.

On two wheels, the Italian rider Marco Capodacqua added his name to the record books of the Africa Eco Race finishing ahead of his compatriots Alberto Dottori and Giovanni Stefani. An extraordinary adventure for these pure amateurs.

Tomorrow, the arrival at the Rose Lake will allow the caravan of the Africa Eco Race to celebrate its winners after 11 days of intense racing in surroundings which were quite simply extraordinary.