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Dakar 2019

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Dakar 2019 is set for Peru Jan 6-17 and while we don't know the final list of riders at this point, I do know that both Skyler Howes and Garrett Poucher are going to represent the US!IMG_3038.JPG.03a678cec638412de7f55912040370d6.JPG

I've supported riders before (financially) and this time will be no different but it is personal this time.  I had the good fortune of racing and pitting with Garrett and Skyler at Sonora Rally this last March and also raced with Garrett at Baja Rally last year.  The amount of effort he expended on my behalf, mostly in prepping my 450X, was really amazing and I'm forever indebted to him for that experience.  I said it before but pitting with these guys made it feel like I was backstage with some major musical group.

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Join me in supporting their bid to get to Dakar this year at this GoFundMe link.

Dakar used to be about privateers and still is to an extent.  I feel these two not only have a good chance of finishing, but finishing well.  Skyler won his first rally raid event at Sonora earlier this year, they both came in third at Baja 1000 (team of 3) and Skyler just won the Baja Rally (by 30 min).  They are super nice people and work their asses off.

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nice to see American riders in the Dakar. It's been a bit of an European party too long.

Will they be participating in the Malle Moto class?

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@Woonjas that's awesome!  I'd really like to do another rally again myself.  I want to take what I learned and improve.

I also heard a week or so ago that Bill Conger, who did his first Dakar last year on a bike, will be the navigator for Robby Gordon's team's other UTV.  Very happy for him.

This is going to be such an amazing Dakar!  10 days but 90% dunes.  Can't wait.

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Looks like the Dakar is finally going to be about the stages again instead of mostly liaisons.
Nice thing about the Africa Eco Race is that they allow >450 cc bikes. Biggest this year are the African Twin, 950 & 990 Adventure bikes

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32 minutes ago, Woonjas said:

Looks like the Dakar is finally going to be about the stages again instead of mostly liaisons.
Nice thing about the Africa Eco Race is that they allow >450 cc bikes. Biggest this year are the African Twin, 950 & 990 Adventure bikes

That's a great idea.  These bikes are all capable of dunes; just maybe not hugely long sections.  Then you have the 790 coming as as well as the 690/701 bikes that are great here too.

On a similar note, Radek Burkat and Vasile Scurtu, who I raced with at Sonora Rally both won the KTM Challenge (doing Merzouga on the new 790) from Canada and they were at the Sonora Rally nav school recently and both brought their 990's!  They are insanely good riders and have quite a bit of dune experience already on those bikes but I have to say they were damn lucky it rained because when that dune sand is dry it's a whole other kind of day!

 

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Stage 1 was fast and short.

Brabec at 3rd 2:52 (yes that's 2 minutes 52 seconds!)

Laia Sanz 31st at 12:38

Garrett and Skyler at 45th and 46th at 19:22 and 19:28

Angelo 51st at 22:31

Nathan Rafferty 97th at 41:03 (probably where I would have been lol)

Gee Motzkin 133rd at 1:21:39

 

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Brabec is out fast this morning overtaking Barreda Bort for the lead but it's still very early (wp2 of 8

update: still first at wp3. I guess all that nav work with Jimmy Lewis is paying off now

update:  So Ricky lost the lead to Walkner and finished 2nd back 0:22.  Not bad for Honda!  Toby Price a strong 4th today.

Pretty strong showing from Honda this year I'd say (so far).

Update:  Skyler is FLYING!  Through wp7 ahead of Laia Sanz!  Dang!  Garrett way back and shows through wp 6 so far.  Pablo Quintanilla must have had a problem as it shows him only through wp1 but sometimes that's a nav equipment problem.

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So Skyler did great and finished 35th.  Something happened to Garrett after wp5 and he just got in finishing 120th.  Mechanical I'd assume.  I spoke with one of his pit crew and they (not surprisingly) were not aware of the issue.

Angelo 114th today but Rafferty did well (for him) at 94th then Motzkin at 96th.

Brabec will get to follow Mattias' lines tomorrow at least.

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Stage 2 summary.

Garrett had a melted mousse yesterday which is why he came in 120th.

Good news is he's clawing his way back currently in 40th on stage 3 at wp6 and Skyler is in 18th!!!

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Stage 3!

 

Barreda got "stuck in a ditch" (sounds familiar!) and his Dakar is done unfortunately.  Walkner and Brabec also got off course so they paid about a 20 min penalty trying to catch back up.

Good news is Skyler absolutely killed it finishing like 15th and then  Garrett roars back and finishes 25th!!!  Really happy for those two.

Nathan Rafferty even got 61st which is super respectable.

Anyone hear about this guy Dutto the parapalegic?  He is making it happen!  Finished today 108th or something but damn!  Huge respect there.

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Dang!  What stage 4!  Brabec come roaring back and beats Walkner for the overall lead of 2:19 now on Quintanilla!

That time I met Ricky...

Skyler still a solid 24th today (22 overall) with Garrett in 52nd (66 overall now).

Angelo 70th today (90th overall).  Rafferty 63rd (70th overall)

Dutto the parapalegic still pounding it out today!

Robby Gordon having issues today :(  Our friend Bill Conger co-driving/navigating Robby's other car (Hildebrand 367) I don't see on the list today!  They finished yesterday so wondering if they missed the start for some reason?  May be nav equipment issues sorted out later today (let's hope).

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Apparently Skyler hit a kid on a motorcycle in a liaison section yesterday and dislocated a shoulder!!! He popped it back in and continued and even did well today but one wonders how much pain he is in today and what that took off his performance if any today.

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