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Kazakhstan crew approaching Top 10 at Dakar 14 января 2014, 12:06

Kazakhstan’s off-road car crew of Rakhimbayev and Demyanenko are approaching the Dakar's Top 10.
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Photo courtesy of the press-service of the Astana Motorsports Photo courtesy of the press-service of the Astana Motorsports
Kazakhstan’s off-road car crew of Aidyn Rakhimbayev and Vladimir Demyanenko have been steadily approaching the Dakar's Top 10, Tengrinews reports. Kazakhstan's best car crew of Aidyn Rakhimbayev and Vladimir Demyanenko were still in the Top 20 after the sixth stage of Dakar. The crew on Proto Overdrive #342 completed the stage in the 18th place moving one line up to the 13th place in the overall. "Of course we are pleased with our results. Even entering Dakar's Top 20 is a great achievement. There are no miracles here, it is impossible to win a competition of this scale right away and in a sweep, this is especially true for Dakar. The sixth stage was a classic rally, an absolute high-speed track. It felt comfortable for us. The task for the next half of the rally is to retain the position that we have gained. It is not that easy, that is why we will put all our efforts to keep this result and successfully complete the Dakar 2014," Rakhimbayev said. The day carried some adventure for the other Kazakhstan crew at Dakar. However, the misfortunes did not prevent pilot Denis Berezovsky and his navigator Ignat Falkov (#413) from retaining their 40th position in the overall after the sixth stage of the Dakar 2014. They finished the stage in the 45th place. "There was a river 5 kilometers after the start, we had to cross it. Several trucks crossed it ahead of us, and we decided to drive a little to the left from their track to cross the stream. The track seemed more solid there and we through that that place was shallow. But there turned out to be more water than we thought and our car got flushed. We had to pull it out of the water by hand. Fortunately, no permanent damage was made, but we lost some time and retained our result," Berezovsky shared. Although the track of the 6th stage was pretty straight forward, the Kazakhstan truck crew of pilot Arthur Ardavichus, navigator Alexey Nikizhev and mechanic Radim Kaplanek on their new Tatra truck has some difficulties with it and in the end retained their 25th position in the overall after finishing the sixth stage in the 21st place. The concept of Tatra truck involves an independent suspension. Tatra’s chassis construction is quite unusual, it is not linear. It makes the truck more vulnerable at turns and takes some getting used to before the pilot can get the most out of the vehicle. "Today's track wasn't very good for us. We are good at long distances, but more complex, the better. We are experimenting now, looking for ways to stabilize the truck at sharp turns. It develops too big side roll angles, keeping the changes of roll over quite high. Today's special sections of 150 kilometers had an even track - a high-speed track, but it was all twisted with dozens of serpentines. This is exactly what our vehicle doesn't like: big roll angles and speed losses at turns. Even a singled mistake at such track could cost us a lot of time," Ardavichus said. Ardavichus added that the task of the Astana Motorsports crews was to get to Dakar's finish regardless of the position in the ranking. The Dakar rally is a survival race. The organizers make track to make sure that not all the racers can finish the marathon rally. And the winners are those, who reach the finish line. Only half of the truck crews are left by now, although they were preparing for the race during the whole year. And 50% of cars were out of the race after the fifth day of Dakar. That is why the main goal of Kazakhstan's Astana Motorsports racers is to reach the finish. The rest day at the Dakar rally was on January 11. The seventh stage took place on January 12.

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