January 12, 2014
A change of scenery today for the Dakar as the competitors saw green ladscapes and water after the dry Argentinian desert. Both cars came in to the bivouac behind where they wanted to be but full of energy to see what can be done to improve their fortunes in next week’s second half of the Dakar. Valuable data has been gained from the cars and makeshift repairs can be properly attended to during the rest day.
The 6th special of the Dakar again saw the bikes and cars take different routes. Another two parter with a neutralised section in between the two competitive parts of the stage and a trip high in the mountains above 3.000 metres saw the cars struggling for air to feed their massive engines and caused a few issues for the cars.
Hard graft was needed to push man and machine to the finish of today’s stage. Its easy to be full of energy when things are going well, its a testament to the character of the team when you can shrug off overwhelming problems that would have caused other teams to quit but determination is in the DNA of both Team SPEED Energy and Eric Vigouroux Racing. A tough week, one car down and little to show in the leaderboard for the effort expended.
Tomorrows rest day may well be well earned but anyone thinking that the team will be resting isnt tinking Dakar. The cars may not be racing, but the teams will be at full speed preparing the cars for another week of hell.
Melancholy in the pits as news of the untimely passing of Eric Palante filters through. A highly experienced and well loved rider in the Dakar bivouacs. If you are of a religious persuasion, say a prayer for him and the family and friends he leaves behind.