It's done! This year's 41st edition of the world's most famous long-distance rally is over. The organizers promised one of the toughest Dakars in history and a number of crews, including the North-Bohemian design team, would certainly confirm this. Out of forty one trucks only fourteen made it to Lima. Those who were more fortunate could continue in the second week of the race at least in the "little" Dakar. And in it was Gert Huzink with the Renault from Židovice, who was the third fastest truck out of these.
"I admit that the end for me is very sad. In the penultimate stage engine failed Janus van Kasteren, so he eventually had to stay in the dunes overnight. Instead of reaching the Lima and celebrate, we went to look for it. None of us wanted to imagine such an end. I have already said at the beginning, it is crucial to finish Dakar healthy, because Dakar can be damn surprising. We are lucky that we are healthy, but we all of course wanted more - to make the result and we have not made it. We can be happy with Gert Huzink, who got the truck to Lima and saved the situation, "Dakar Mario Kress, lead designer of the North Bohemian team, MKR Technology, summed up the emotions about this year's Dakar.
The final 10th stage from Pisco to Lima was rather symbolic. But still, the crews had to make almost three hundred and sixty kilometres, including hundred and twelve kilometres of special sections. Dutchman van Genugten was the winner of the day and took an hour and half. Janus van Kasteren from Mammoet Rallysport has not started the final stage. His engine unit failed his Renault truck in the penultimate stage, and the crew instead of enjoying a festive finish, waited in the dunes for a support mechanic team to extract them.
However, crews who were not fortunate in the first week, could race in the second week as the organizers allowed them to start in so-called "little" Dakar. And in this competition the Dutch driver, Gert Huzink from the Riwald team led the North Bohemian truck to the city of Lima. Although in this category all vehicles were classified together, Huzink took third place among trucks in the final stage, and got the same position among trucks in overall standings.
The final part, however, did not affect the overall podium of the main competition, so Russian driver Eduard Nikolaev, completed a golden hattrick and got his fourth career Dakar win, this tome won with lead of 25 minutes ahead of his compatriot Sotnikov. "This year's Dakar was a big lesson for us again. Every year it's completely different and one always realizes the fact that the race can always be even harder than you had thought last time. We were smacked a few times and we have something to work on. Essential is that we have people we can always rely on. They've worked around the clock again, and they we very grateful to them, "added Mario Kress.