Kazakhstan's team Astana - 3 offroaders & 1 truck - at Dakar scrutineering site

04 января 2013, 15:52

Kazakhstan team Astana has arrived in Lima, Peru, to put their vehicles through a technical check prior to the start of the Dakar 2013.

The team will have four crews:
Aidyn Rakhimbayev and Gabdulla Ashimov – M440 prototype – offroaders category
Bauyrzhan Issabayev and Dmitri Yugay – M440 prototype – offroaders category
Andrey Cherednikov and Albert Horn – Gforce prototype – offroaders category
Arthur Ardavichus, Aleksey Nikizhev and Nurlan Turlubayev – KAMAZ – trucks category

Arthur Ardavichus' crew has received the number 517. Offroaders of Cherednikov, Issabayev and Rakhimbayev will drive under numbers 406, 409 and 410, correspondingly.

Photo courtesy of raceface.tv

Photo courtesy of raceface.tv

Andrey Cherednikov told about his expectations before the start of the race:

A: This race is my first Dakar. Of course, we have some worries. The most important is to stay cool during the race. It is very important to cope with our emotions, keep a tight rein on our feelings and emotions and retain a clear head.

Q: What can you say about your car?

A: GForce team is one of the leaders in this category. Last season they became world champions in offroaders category of the cross country rally. I have been testing the car in other tournaments for a whole year. I am very pleased with it.

Q: Who is your navigator?

- Albert Horn from Hungary is my navigator. He won cross country rallies in Hungary several times, and he has been through three Dakars. I am glad we have him onboard.



Aidyn Rakhimbayev also told about his Dakar feelings:

A: This is not my first year in auto sport. I look forward to the start of the race. Our car is fully ready. We have passed all the races we had to pass during the year. Dakar is something special for all pilots in the world. This is like the Olympics: the race gathers the best sportsmen from around the world. Just as everyone else, we hope we can make it to finish.


Kazakhstan team Astana was one of top three leaders of 14 stages of the Dakar-2012 in trucks.

Dutch racer Gerard De Rooy won the race in the general classification. He was 51 minutes 19 seconds ahead of the second leader Hans Stacey. Astana crew led by Arthur Ardavichus won the third place.

“This is really a big victory for Astana team and for the whole Kazakhstan. Starting the race in the 33rd place, we managed to join the leaders and show stable results almost at all the stages of the race,” Kazakhstan pilot Ardavichus commented the team’s success.

Kazakhstan's Astana truck team was ranked 8th at its first Dakar race in 2011.

Arthur Ardavichus personal stock photo

Arthur Ardavichus personal stock photo

The riders and crews of the 35th Dakar are already focused on the 8,500 kilometers of roads, tracks and dunes that they will have to tackle to reach Santiago.

The Kamaz team arrived all together at the site to submit their vehicles to the race officials. They are considered one of the truck race favorites. The setbacks experienced on the 2012 edition now belong to the past for the team with ten wins, who are especially counting on Eduard Nikolaev and Ayrat Mardeev to reacquaint themselves with success. The Russian team now has a captain whose aura should energize the group, because Vladimir Chagin is making his debut as a team manager: “It's a new start for me. It's almost as if I was starting my first rally all over again,” said the seven times winner of the event.

Arthur Ardavichus personal stock photo

Arthur Ardavichus personal stock photo

The assurance of the “Tsar” could make his rivals tremble, but Gerard De Rooy, the title holder and yet another of the race favorites, gave short shrift to the idea that he was weighed down by responsibility: “In reality, it was last year that the pressure was strongest. Now we have seen the level we reached and know what we are capable of, but we are also aware that it can all change dramatically in an instant on the Dakar. I know I have the best race number, but that is only worth something on the first day. After that, the road will be a long one”.



As regards the cars, several pretenders for the top 10 were in attendance, such as Mathias Kahle, Regis Delahaye or Pascal Thomasse, as were the favorites in the Production category, Xavier Foj, Jun Mitsuhashi and Nicolas Gibon. However, the organizers learned of the withdrawal of Bernhard Ten Brinke, 8th in 2012, who has stayed in the Netherlands following a death in his family.



The 35th Dakar will start on January 5 in Lima. The racers have to drive through 15 stages at the territories of Peru, Argentina and Chile. The finish is scheduled for January 20 in Santiago, Chile.

For the fifth edition organized on the South American continent, the Dakar will be hosted by three countries that have unveiled their characteristics over the last few years. For the first time, the desert stages will make their appearance in the first few days of the rally. After reacquainting with Lima, the riders and drivers will get straight to the heart of the matter. The rest day will take place in San Miguel de Tucuman.


The epicenter of power and Spanish colonial expansion in the 16thcentury, Peru has remained the 3rd biggest country of the South American continent. When the Dakar first arrived in Peru, only the most stout-hearted, top-class drivers made it to the podium in Lima. This year, enthusiasm for the rally has spread throughout the country, as 25 vehicles driven by Peruvians will be at the start of the Dakar…on their home territory.


With almost 3,500 km separating the border with Bolivia from the tip of Tierra del Fuego, the nation of Argentina is almost like a continent in itself. Its extent, from north to south and from east to west, produces several very different aspects of the same country in terms of climate, relief or lifestyle.

Argentineans have experienced ecstasy and agony with the riders and drivers who have represented them on the rally. Their designated flag-bearer, Orlando Terranova, exited the race prematurely in 2012, but his team-mate Lucio Alvarez put in a first-rate performance to finish in 5th place at the wheel of a Toyota Hilux, allowing aficionados to dream of a podium finish in the future. At present, it is in the quad category that the patriotic fervor of the fans is best rewarded. Marcos Patronelli, who successfully defended his title in 2012, with his brother Alejandro as runner-up, continued a family saga almost unprecedented in the history of sport.


Long and thin, bound on one side by the Pacific Ocean and on the other by the Andes, Chile is one of the longest countries in the world. From the Atacama Desert, renowned for being the most arid in the world, to the Andes Cordillera, the Dakar drivers and teams have experienced the extensive variety of landscapes which Chile has to offer for the past four years.

The Chileans have become used to seeing the rally through the eyes of their favorite driver, Francisco Lopez, winner of six stages since the Dakar has taken place in his country. In 2012, another Chilean took up the baton, at the wheel of a BMW X3: Boris Garafulic proved that his ambitions were well-founded, by finishing 11th for the second year running. He has set his sights on the Top Ten for Santiago.

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