“I knew my only chance to claw back the time I lost yesterday against Skyler was to get past him as soon as possible and then try and build a gap big enough so he could not see me and had to navigate alone. So I went really fast through the dunes, got past my rival around km. 7 and managed to build a good gap at the exit of the erg. However, even if I think Skyler could not see me when he left the dunes, my track was clearly marked on the soft and clean erg that came next, and I think that helped him push and close on me. After the refuel and the long controlled zone, we both raced really fast, swapping positions several times. I won the stage, but the difference is still higher than I’d like. Anyway, I’m happy that I gave all my best, there’s still one to go and we will see what happens tomorrow.”
“It was really, really windy at the beginning, the dunes were difficult to read, because of the sand, so I started quite slow, my difference with Joan was high, the stage was long, so there was no reason to take risks. Joan caught me very quickly, and then he gapped me significantly as we went through the erg. So once we left the dunes and went into the washes, I started to get nervous: I wasn’t catching on Joan, the navigation was tricky and when I left the oued into the big plains I couldn’t even see him, so I got really nervous, like oh-oh, maybe I went too slow! Then we had very fast tracks until the gas check, so I used them to go full gas. I don’t know if my gearing is different to Joan’s or something, but I could cut part of the gap at the refueling. After that, there were very fast tracks again, and I went wide open, it wasn’t easy, as we had strong front winds, but I caught him and we swapped positions three or four times, I have to say that Joan is very good at putting pressure on you, by riding really close behind! So, lots of fun today, one day to go, which I will take like every other day.”
(Sergio) The rally is much more interesting than I thought at the beginning, it’s long, it has very tough sections, and we are going more or less like everyone else: some stages are good, some others not so good. The last three have been good for us, we stand in fifth overall, and almost as importantly we are having a lot of fun! We are really enjoying the race: all kind of terrains and landscapes, the fantastic ambience at the bivouacs, complete absence of liaisons… I’m personally very happy to be here, and I know the rest of the team feels the same. Only 185 kms to go, if we can have a good day tomorrow I think we can finish the race in style.
“This is not Dakar, I mean the name of this rally-raid is not that, but the organization made such a beautiful race with real special stages in the old dakarian style! It’s amazing. It’s my first time in Morocco Desert Challenge and the first time with this new truck configuration. I like it and I feel good driving it. Today we are first at the finish line and I’m so happy. In yesterday SS we made a mistake and we lost some position in the overall ranking. Our goal? See us tomorrow again on the podium…”.
“Today was a super special stage. I have a lot of fun! The first part of the track was in the dunes of Merzouga: we drove fast and did some nice overtaking. We arrived third at the finish line of Bouarfa and now we are second in the overall ranking behind Viazovich and his MAZ. Unluckily during the first stages we lost time because of some tire drillings. I know it’s quite impossible to grab the first position, we are 27 minutes late, but tomorrow we’ll do our best. Anyway, it’s my fourth participation in Morocco Desert Challenge, once on a motorbike and the others one driving a truck: different experiences but always very interesting and amazing”.