STAGE 6 - Stage stopped at Km 100 - unridable Tracks left over from the trucks the day before!
The cancelation of yesterday's race due to a sandstorm was followed by the next cancelation today
The consequences and water masses of the last rainfall unfortunately made large parts of the route impassable again and after a few of the top riders reported to the A.S.O. how dangerous riding on theses tracks is, there was no choice but to cancel the stage again. None of the organizers, and certainly not David Castera, would like to stop or shorten a stage, if it wouldn't be for the safety of the participants! BUT somehow ... it's always me who is pulling the short straw?
The adverse circumstances can not "buckle" me ... I am in a good mood and really motivated for the 2nd week!
Yesterday evening the jury decided to multiply the total time of the 5 stage ( X2 ) for the riders which were stopped during the stage when the same was canceled! For me that meant ==> 45 x 2 = 90 minutes! This was a shock for mebeing basically punished with 1 1/2 hours penalty 👎 This was/is a major setback for meat in recovering my lost time from day 1.
Nevertheless, this morning I was very motivated and in good spirits. I really enjoyed driving today! I don't know whether it was due to the route, which partly was very enduro heavy or whether it was due to my late start position and I had to plow through the field again ?
Because of my bad Stage 5, I started very far back and for this reason I had a lot of slower riders in front. On the one hand it is fun to pass a lot of other riders, on the other hand this is often associated with problems. In narrow passages you don't get past them fast enough and you have to queue up at the back like grabbing fo food in a cafeteria until you get a free travel - of course ... again there is a lot of time left!
Today it was sometimes very "Enduro Heavy", very rocky, which is not that easy with a bike like this :)
After the enduro section, the tracks became very fast again and in some cases the question rises ... should I risk it? ... do I prefer and take off gas? There everyone has to decide himelf how big his willingness for risks is!
And shortly after we came into an area with "Fesh Fesh" and huge stones !! .. in the pictures you can get an idea of Fesh Fesh .... it doesn't stop - not in front of the smallest crack!
The finest dust feels like cement - it sticks everywhere and penetrates the smallest cracks!
At km 100 the stage was canceled because of the rain and partly because of the impassable route. It would have been irresponsible to let the rest of the riders enter these sections of the route! Sometimes the trucks had problems getting through there yesterday :(
In addition, there had been a few serious falls before. Ross Branch of the YAMAHA works driver unfortunately had to retire today.
Unfortunately, to the disadvantage, the cancellation went back to me - today I might have made up some time on my competitors 😏 Tomorrow is a day of rest and then the game will start all over again!
Nevertheless, today gave me a good feeling and a lot of mental upswing. I felt that I could "nestle" in the places around 40 overall :)
Of course I try to take this feeling with me for the 2nd week 👍
I know that is not necessarily my real level of performance, but in any case a really cool feeling when you are listed right next to a Danilo Petrucci ... I'll hang in my garage :)
My first "HIGHLIGHT" at my first DAKAR ... I think that's impressive!