There is no shortage of surprises during the Dakar Rally. On Monday, due to torrential rain that also flooded the bivouac, the organizers modified the route of Stage 2, which was originally supposed to be a marathon stage. The competing crews were also allowed to use the help of their mechanics at the finish line. The Big Shock! Racing’s Martin Macik and his crew were, however, not thrown off by the unexpected events, as they continued their steady ride and bravely held on among the fastest in the truck category. The team finished Stage 2 in an excellent 7th place and is now 8th in the overall rankings.
The driver Martin Soltys with Roman Krejci and Jakub Jirinec also quickly replenished their strengths after the previous tricky ride and set out on the track of the second stage with the will to continue fighting. Their fight paid off, and they successfully moved among the Top 10. They reached the finish line in 11th position and overall moved to 17th place.
Adjusted route and mechanics on alert
The Dakar Rally Monday programme was supposed to feature an adventurous marathon stage where the crews have to service their machines themselves in the evening. However, the organisers announced changes on Sunday. Due to the heavy rain that flooded the place where the marathon bivouac was to stand, Monday’s stage was held in a classic way, and the finish line was moved to Al Qaisumah. After completing the 338-kilometre-stage, the crews were able to hand their vehicles over to their mechanics. In the case of the Big Shock! Racing, however, no major servicing was needed. Both yellow trucks arrived at the bivouac in decent shape.
Martin Macik among the elite drivers
The driver Martin Macik, navigated by Frantisek Tomasek and supported by mechanic David Svanda, once again kept his racing pace up with the fastest cars in the truck category in Stage 2. He started Monday’s stage from the 7th position and managed to keep it until the finish. “The second stage is over. Today, we set the pace from the beginning. I admit that it’s been really tough, nobody will forgive you anything. It pays off to stay in the front because the fewer vehicles pass you, the better for you. The track was very wet, slick, and technical. The terrain is difficult – we were crossing level-2 dunes. We know that we are still at the beginning of the Dakar, so the most difficult parts are yet to come. Tomorrow, the race is back on,” Macik explained. The crew did not have to deal with any major complications on the track. “We are surprised that Charles is still holding up so well. He took all the blows, which are sometimes hard, without any major damage. Only one jump in the dunes cost us a light and a dented hood,” the mechanic David Svanda added.
Martin Soltys’ crew has gotten used to everything and is attacking the Top 10
Martin Soltys’ crew started the second stage after a hell of a Sunday ride with tire changes and repairs. However, the crew has already had enough time to practice working together and got used to the track and one another, even in extreme situations. This was also reflected in their performance on Monday. They were flying through the rankings from the start, leaving one vehicle after another behind. From the 21st starting position, they gradually worked their way up to 11th place. “It’s been the best ride so far, we didn’t have any problems. We enjoyed every part of the track, even though we started from the back and had to pass several cars and buggies. Luckily, it went quite smoothly. I’m really happy with our today’s performance,” Martin Soltys reported.
The Dakar participants are now anxiously awaiting further developments in the race and hope they will have the opportunity to experience a marathon stage and a sleepless night in the desert repairing their cars at some point.
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