Dakar Saudi Arabia Stage 3. Winner yesterday,
Giniel led the cars away but struggled to make tracks and was eventually passed by Nasser
and the others. You know once they passed me about kilometre 300, and from there I just
followed them. So it was easy to follow them then once we were behind.
Bernhard’s Stage 3 was a replica of Stage 2 four punctures, he had to borrow a spare
from Fernando today. Nasser had the one puncture, and finished
4:55 off the pace before a penalty. Happy, his focus is on Week 2.
I’m quite happy to be second place now overall general. Yeah, it’s look like going very well.
Fernando can now truly enjoy his Dakar, and with this he ended up the fastest of the Toyota
foursome in third. The places we went through, they were just
amazing to watch and sometimes in some of the valleys, I was saying to Marc: “look,
look what we have in front!” And he said: “head down, head down!” You know, “keep focus,”
you know. So what makes this Toyota Hilux so special?
Number one, the engine. A 5-litre V8, producing around 400-450 bhp
and an amaaaaaazing engine note. The engine is from a Lexus and look how far
back it is, right beside the driver. It has a tubular frame chassis made out of
chrome molly, and a carbon fibre body for ultimate lightness.
Powerbrake supply the brakes and check out those beefy wishbones.
With the length of stages, the car needs a 500-litre fuel tank.
Keeping the centre of gravity low, two spare wheels under the co-driver and diver. And
still in the centre of the car, a third one besides the fuel tank.
The two Reiger suspension struts have, as per the regulations, 250mm of travel.
And everywhere you look, spares for the car, including a spade for digging yourself out
of the sand.