Loprais Moves Up to Top 10, Kolomý Loses by Repair
The thirty-ninth edition of Dakar Rally is like on a swing for the Tatra Buggyra Racing team. Following problems in the previous stages Aleš Loprais makes his way forward, with fifth best stage time. On the other hand Martin Kolomý leaves the top 10 for a nearly four-hour repair.
Although Aleš Loprais did have some problems in the course of stage ten, his crew coped with all the traps excellently and the result was the fifth best stage time and move up to the top ten. “The beginning was super, absolutely ideal for the Tatra chassis. I wanted a podium rank today, which I seemed to manage, but as change would have it, then another problem with the servo appeared. This time a stone shot off a hose and we had to repair it, which took some twelve to fifteen minutes. There were many interesting moments there today, but nice. The final fifth rank is satisfactory. Pity there were not more stages in the second half, now it is hard to do something about it,“ said Aleš Loprais.
A completely different was entry to stage ten from Chilecito to San Juan for Martin Kolomý and Kilian brothers. They had to repair engine cooling for nearly four hours and in the overall ranking, which had looked like a decent final result between t he top eight, dropped to sixteenth rank. “In the beginning we found the road ideal for our truck but then it stopped. The problem was seized bearing of the band wheel tensioner. The break was long for we had to replace the bearing and the cooling of the stopped engine and then putting it all together took nearly four hours. Then we struggled on, the road was ideal for Tatra and all well,“ said Martin Kolomý in the bivouac with disappointment.
“We approach the rest of the race as testing for next edition. The organizer has made navigation harder and I found a mistake in the roadbook today again. One valley was so eroded that the things that had happened there must have been real horror. We managed all without problems. We even tested the truck decently, Martin worked really hard and the time from that part would certainly be very interesting,“ said the navigator René Kilian. Martin Kolomý covered the next two way points with the shortest time and held the top five for the rest of the race.
Also his team was much disappointed after two days of non-stop travel covering two and a half thousand kilometres. “It is rather sad for us for us for we toil on it the whole year and when we think we eventually move forward a blow like this thwarts everything. That is not pleasant. On the other hand Aleš struggled hard today and moves up the ranking. Mixed feelings these are,“ said the chief constructor David Vršecký.
The pilots will face the last dunes of this edition around San Juan, for the first fifty kilometres of the stage. The rest of the 288 measured section will mainly comprise speed tests known from WRC championship.