The Big Shock! Racing crew is leaving the Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge, the second race of the World Rally-Raid Championship, despite a great start. The gearbox betrayed the driver Martin Macik in the dunes in Stage 2. Despite this, the team will bring home valuable experience and some tips for further development of new vehicles. The mechanics will put them in use as soon as they return home. The Project 2030 team’s truck, built in Sedlcany by Martin Macik, Sr.’s MM Technology, continues in the competition. Everyone is looking forward to the next rally, Baja Aragon.

A promising start

The Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge was the first race after Dakar. The teams sent equipment to Dubai directly from Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. The mechanics had about a week to prepare the trucks – just before Sunday’s start. The opening stage went well for Martin Macik, Frantisek Tomasek and David Svanda. “From the beginning to the end, there was only sand, beautiful, big dunes. We were falling into funnels, finding our way through, avoiding treacherous cliffs that appeared out of nowhere, and we had to cope with high temperatures in the cabin. You have to experience rallies like this, they teach you a lot. Plus, the desert here is really beautiful,” Martin Macik said at the finish line.

What followed was an action-packed mess. But we are glad we experienced it 

The Big Shock! Racing crew had a promising start. However, about halfway through the special stage, the race took an unexpected turn for the team from Sedlcany. “We were left hanging in the dune. We wanted to reverse down, but we couldn’t. We found out that the gearbox was stuck in the second gear, and the car was only going forward. But there was a huge hill of sand that we couldn’t climb. So, we took out shovels and started digging. We had to turn the engine off so the gearbox wouldn’t pull us forward, and we pushed Charles down the dune. That went well, but only for a while. Suddenly, we couldn’t go any further. We tried everything we could – we even removed the gimbal. Eventually, we called the organizers, and they pulled us down with a winch. We found out we could only go forward – in second gear. We came down to the road and met with our assistance truck. It was a mess, but also another great experience,” Martin Macik reported. After arriving at the bivouac, the mechanics got straight to work. Unfortunately, the automatic gearbox could not be repaired, and the rally was over for the Big Shock! Racing crew. “Nevertheless, we are glad that we experienced all this. We drove over 400 kilometres in hard-to-find, extremely difficult dunes. We tested a few new things so my dad could build the new truck he had promised. We are looking forward to coming back here, the dunes are beautiful,” Martin Macik concluded. The crew is now excited about the next rallies on the schedule, Baja Aragon and Rallye du Maroc.

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