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Dakar 2009: Day 8-Honda Motorcycle Report

  Posted at 01:18:30 PM
  File under  Dakar Race Honda
  Author: Honda Press Release
  Location: Normandy, France

Dakar 2009 logo
Honda logo
Dakar halfway, rest day in Valparaiso, Chile

The last competitors are still battling to make it to the bivouac in time. Arriving too late means you're out, the rest day cannot be used make a late arrival. All Team Honda Europe riders are in, except Vadim Pritulyak, who's still underway in the 400 km long liaison to Valparaiso. Making it to the rest day is little bit like making it to the finish. Just taking a moment to relax, and not dive right away with your nose in the roadbook and preparing your stuff for the next day. As Jurgen van den Goorbergh (29th in the stage, 36th overall) put it:it's off course mainly between your ears. But if someone told me I have to get on my bike tomorrow to ride a special, I'm taking the plane home right now!''

Dakar 2009 Jurgen van den Goorbergh
Jurgen van den Goorbergh       © Honda

Vadim Pritulyak
is having a very long day for the third time in a row. Yesterday a little seal from the oil filter was causing problems, and he was losing oil rapidly on his way to the start. At the start of the special he noticed there was almost no oil left in his engine. Pritulyak managed to find 6 liters of oil in a village nearby, and he went into the special. He made it to the finish, but used all of the 6 liters of oil. From his Russian friend Kabirov (Kamaz) he got another 2 liters, and in his last kilometers to the bivouac some locals also gave him oil. At 2.00 a.m. he was finally in the bivouac... The special of today he finished in 139th position. It took him almost 13 hours while fastest rider of the day local hero Chaleco Lopez did it in just over 2 hours.... It was a special day for the Chilean KTM rider, who was anxious to be the first to enter his home soil.

Kees Koolen
(73rd in the special, 70th overall) literally dragged his friend Johan van der Laan (Husqvarna 450 / Dutch Team Dakar) behind his Honda  for more than 200 kilometers. Just when they crossed the border between Argentina and Chili the engine of van der Laan died. By using a rope of one meter and a half (!) Kees was pulling van der Laan all the way to the bivouac. Teammanager Henk Hellegers: "We were riding behind them and couldn't bear to watch these two. Kees was waving at all the fans, going at 100 km per hour. And Johan right behind him trying not to crash into all these fans. Luckily it all ended well". "Off course you don't leave your friends behind" was the comment of Kees Koolen. Hilarious!

Mick Extance
remains going strong. Again he moved one place up in the general ranking. (32rd in the special, 22nd overall) "It was the most beautiful stage of the rally. In the liaison I stopped to have a good look at the mountains and let it all sink in. It was fantastic. My arms were a bit sore today, the rally is demanding its toll. The special suited the 450's quite well. I saw more 450's today around me than normally this week. Tomorrow Steve will change the engine (all bikes get a new engine out of precaution) and I'm going to take care of my riding equipment and do some laundry."

Christopher Jarmuz
had an easy day without incidents. "I'm going to sleep all day tomorrow. The next few days are going to be tough, although they say Monday should be easy. But Tuesday and Wednesday are going to be extremely difficult, so I'm a bit concerned about that. I'm pleased with my ranking sofar, hopefully the coming week I will be able to look up a bit more."

Dakar 2009 Andes Mountains
Andes Mountains       © Honda

Tomorrow we look back at the first week, and look ahead to the second. We talk to Jurgen van den Goorbergh, Mirjam Pol, teammanager Henk Hellegers and mecanics Gerben Vruggink and Steve Bowyer. And off course the latest news from the team!

Dakar 2009 Mirjam Pol
Mirjam Pol       © Honda

Via: Honda Dakar

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