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The 10th edition of the Africa Eco Race is getting ready ath the Stade Rondelli of Menton with the administrative and technical checks. The real starts will be given by Jean-Marie Bigard (french humorist) on sunday at 9 AM in Monaco. For the moment, every competitors have to get through this very important step.

The pressure is rising

"The pressure is already there, the race begins now !", Here is how Kristian Felix Jensen comments his turn during the checks that animate the city of Menton during two days. At 26, the youngest Norwegian motorcycle rider is the protégé of Pal Anders Ullevalseter, two-time winner of the Africa Eco Race, and is competing for the first time in a raid of this size. He is following his 49-year-old mentor, who still has the same enthusiasm :

"This year I'm really excited because it's my only big competition, I know it's going to be difficult because I'm not young anymore but I'm taking two 26 year old drivers who will  be  able  to push me."

All competitors have 48 hours to certify that everything is in order (insurance, registration, vehicle safety standards, stickers ...) before going to the parc fermé Quai Antoine 1er in Monaco where will officially start the 10th edition of the Africa Eco Race.

The primordial step of verifications

The first vehicles arrived on Wednesday, December 27th, just like the team of the winner of the last car edition, Vladimir Vasilyev (RUS). Good timing for the staff who could take care of the car and wash it before scrolling alongside the quads, motorcycles, buggies and trucks that pass under a tent of the organization to be watched in every detail. The drivers must show their race dress and all their equipment to be sure that everything is in order as required by the FIA. An important step before the race, a bit like a prologue where you absolutely have to cross the finish line and win the stamp so you can go on in the competition.

A unique show for the public

While the truck of the Portuguese Elisabete Jacinto settles in the Rondelli stadium, the one that belongs to the Dutch Gérard de Rooy (two-time winner of the Dakar) is photographed by the public who can admire those big monsters. At the same time, the 7 MD Rally Sport buggies line up at the back of the stadium and all the staff is thrilled to meet again before taking part in the adventure. 

"It's been a year since we are working on the cars, the checks are intense for the staff, once they are finished we will be relieved, then we leave the keys to the drivers and it is up to them to go on"        

explains Antoine Morel the boss of the team. All are eager to get on the podium of departure... Meeting at 9am Sunday in Monaco !


Official press release
 
GR DRIVER / CO-DRIVERS NATIONALITY VEHICLE TEAM
201 T1 Vladimir VASILYEV RU MINI COOPER COUNTRYMAN G-ENERGY TEAM
201 T1 Konstantin ZHILTSOV RU MINI COOPER COUNTRYMAN G-ENERGY TEAM
202 T1 Mathieu SERRADORI FR MCM SRT
202 T1 Fabian LURQUIN BE MCM SRT
203 T1 Andrey RUDSKOY RU G-FORCE SUPROTEC RACING
203 T1 Evgenii ZAGORODNIUK RU G-FORCE SUPROTEC RACING
204 T1 Lionel BAUD FR FDS RACING DAZON FDS RACING FD01
204 T1 Jean-Michel POLATO FR FDS RACING DAZON FDS RACING FD01
205 T1 Patrick MARTIN FR MERCEDES MMO
205 T1 Didier BIGOT FR MERCEDES MMO
206 T1 Pascal THOMASSE FR OPTIMUS MD MD RALLY SPORT
206 T1 Pascal LARROQUE FR OPTIMUS MD MD RALLYE SPORT
207 T1 Guillaume GOMEZ FR OPTIMUS MD MD RALLYE SPORT
207 T1 Francois BORSOTTO FR OPTIMUS MD MD RALLYE SPORT
208 T1 Costel CASUNEANU RO MITSUBISHI CCX
208 T1 Maurilio ZANI IT MITSUBISHI CCX
209 T1 Rémy VAUTHIER CH OPTIMUS MD MD RALLYE SPORT
209 T1 Jean BRUCY FR OPTIMUS MD MD RALLYE SPORT
210 T1 Miroslav ZAPLETAL CZ H3 OFFROADSPORT
210 T1 Marek SYKOR CZ H3 OFFROADSPORT
211 T1 Jean-Pascal BESSON FR TOYOTA RALLYE RAID CONCEPT SARL
211 T1 Patrice ROISSAC FR TOYOTA RALLYE RAID CONCEPT SARL
212 T1 David GERARD FR MD RALLYE MD RALLYE NOMINOE AVENTURES
212 T1 Pascal DELACOUR FR MD RALLYE MD RALLYE NOMINOE AVENTURES
213 T1 Dominique LAURE FR OPTIMUS MD / CAPCOM
213 T1 Christophe CRESPO FR OPTIMUS MD / CAPCOM
214 T1 Yves FROMONT FR BUGGY FROMONT
214 T1 Jean FROMONT FR BUGGY FROMONT
215 T1 Denis KROTOV RU BMW ASPEC MOTORSPORT
215 T1 Dmytro TSYRO UA BMW ASPEC MOTORSPORT
216 T1 Philippe PORCHERON FR MD VEALIS TEAM
216 T1 Jean-Marie LURQUIN BE MD VEALIS TEAM
217 T1 Hervé TOSCANO FR MEGANE VEALIS TEAM
217 T1 Jean-Luc MARTIN FR MEGANE VEALIS TEAM
218 T1 Jean-Noël JULIEN FR OPTIMUS MD RALLY SPORT
218 T1 Rabha JULIEN FR OPTIMUS MD RALLY SPORT
219 T1 Philippe GOSSELIN FR OPTIMUS MD MD RALLY SPORT
219 T1 Hervé MOREL FR OPTIMUS MD MD RALLY SPORT
220 Open Robert Jan SZUSTKOWSKI PL FORD R-SIXTEAM
220 Open Albert GRYSZCZUK PL FORD R-SIXTEAM
221 T2 Robert SZUSTKOWSKI PL FORD R-SIXTEAM
221 T2 Jarosław KAZBERUK PL FORD R-SIXTEAM
222 T2 Alexey TITOV RU FORD RE AUTOCLUB
222 T2 Andrey RUSOV RU FORD RE AUTOCLUB
223 T1 Erwin IMSCHOOT BE TOYOTA I&L PROJECTS
223 T1 Patrick VAN HYFTE BE TOYOTA I&L PROJECTS
224 T1 Gintas PETRUS LT RALLY RAID UK 4X4 STRATEGIJA
224 T1 Povilas VALAITIS LT RALLY RAID UK 4X4 STRATEGIJA
225 T1 Gérald MOGNIER FR PEUGEOT TGO
225 T1 Pierre ROUBIN FR PEUGEOT TGO
226 T2 Gérard VAN LIESHOUT NL TOYOTA T4F RALLYTEAM
226 T2 Guido SLAATS NL TOYOTA T4F RALLYTEAM
228 T1 Bruno BASTIDE FR TOYOTA EAST AFRICA TRACKS
228 T1 Didier CHAUDAT FR TOYOTA EAST AFRICA TRACKS
230 T2 Hervé DIERS FR TOYOTA CHTI FRITERIE
230 T2 Alain BROUSSE FR TOYOTA CHTI FRITERIE
231 T1 Philippe PEDECHE FR NISSAN TEAM PROMO COURSE 82
231 T1 Philippe PERRY FR NISSAN TEAM PROMO COURSE 82
234 T1 Luc VIDAL FR TOYOTA 2000 AVENTURES
234 T1 Marlène VIDAL FR TOYOTA 2000 AVENTURES
240 T1 Stéfano ROSSI IT NISSAN ROSSI 4X4
240 T1 Elvis BORSOI IT NISSAN ROSSI 4X4
241 T2 Gilles GARD FR MITSUBISHI TEAM GARD - UN DAKAR POUR LA VIE ET CONTRE LE CANCER
241 T2 Manuel PINTO FR MITSUBISHI TEAM GARD - UN DAKAR POUR LA VIE ET CONTRE LE CANCER
242 T2 Loïc FREBOURG FR TOYOTA FESH-FESH
242 T2 Franck BOULAY FR TOYOTA FESH-FESH
245 T1 Jean-Christophe SIBELYA FR MITSUBISHI BERTAUD BELIEU
245 T1 Jean-Pierre GIRARD FR MITSUBISHI BERTAUD BELIEU
246 T2 Eric GALLANT FR TOYOTA 2018 LA BELLE AVENTURE
246 T2 Jean-Marc ANCEL FR TOYOTA 2018 LA BELLE AVENTURE
251 T3 Claudiu BARBU RO POLARIS TRANSCARPATIC RALLY TEAM
251 T3 Paul SPIRIDON RO POLARIS TRANSCARPATIC RALLY TEAM
252 T3 Loïc BONNEVIE FR CAN AM RS CONCEPT
252 T3 Sophie HAMYS FR CAN AM RS CONCEPT
253 T3 Jean-Claude RUFFIER FR CAN AM TEAM DAKAR
253 T3 Jérôme BOS FR CAN AM TEAM DAKAR
254 T3 Johan CROMPHOUT BE POLARIS AMACRO CMG RACING TEAM
254 T3 Christian VERHAEREN BE POLARIS AMACRO CMG RACING TEAM
255 T3 Vincent GONZALEZ CH POLARIS EL BLANCO ROSSO RACING TEAM
255 T3 Maurizio DOMINELLA IT POLARIS EL BLANCO ROSSO RACING TEAM
256 T3 Vincent GUINDANI FR CAN AM RS CONCEPT
256 T3 Stéphane NGUYEN FR CAN AM RS CONCEPT
257 T3 Jean-Hugues MONEYRON SN CANAM TEAM DAKAR
257 T3 Thierry MAURY FR CANAM TEAM DAKAR
303   Christophe NOEL FR TOYOTA LES TROIS GROS
303   Philippe CONAN FR TOYOTA LES TROIS GROS
304   Patrick NERETTI FR TOYOTA BASTIDE DES ANGES COTIGNAC
304   Olivier NERETTI FR TOYOTA BASTIDE DES ANGES COTIGNAC
305   Corinne COCOZZA FR RAID VEALIS TEAM
305   Thierry PICCO FR RAID VEALIS TEAM
330   Jean Pierre TESSIER FR TOYOTA CHTI FRITERIE
330   Franck BARBRY FR TOYOTA CHTI FRITERIE
400 T4 Gerard DE ROOY NL IVECO PETRONAS TEAM DE ROOY IVECO
400 T4 Darek RODEWALD PL IVECO PETRONAS TEAM DE ROOY IVECO
400 T4 Moi TORRELLARDONA ES IVECO PETRONAS TEAM DE ROOY IVECO
401 T4 Tomas TOMECEK CZ TATRA PROMET/CZECHOSLOVAK GROUP TEAM
402 T4 Elisabete JACINTO PT MAN BIO-RITMO
402 T4 José MARQUES PT MAN BIO-RITMO
402 T4 Marco COCHINHO PT MAN BIO-RITMO
403 T4 Wuf VAN GINKEL NL IVECO PETRONAS TEAM DE ROOY IVECO
403 T4 Bert VAN DONKELAAR NL IVECO PETRONAS TEAM DE ROOY IVECO
403 T4 Erik KOFMAN NL IVECO PETRONAS TEAM DE ROOY IVECO
404 T4 Johan ELFRINK NL MERCEDES ALL STAR RALLY
404 T4 Dirk SCHUTTEL   MERCEDES ALL STAR RALLY
405 T4 Miklos KOVACS HU SCANIA QUALISPORT RACING
405 T4 Peter CZEGLEDI HU SCANIA QUALISPORT RACING
405 T4 Laszlo ACS HU SCANIA QUALISPORT RACING
406 T4 Johannes VAN DE LAAR NL DAF VAN DE LAAR RACING
406 T4 Ben VAN DE LAAR NL DAF VAN DE LAAR RACING
411 T4 Jan GOVAERE BE MAN ART OF SPEED
411 T4 Patrick HILLEWAERE BE MAN ART OF SPEED
411 T4 Philip HELEWAUT BE MAN ART OF SPEED
407 T4 Karoly FAZEKAS HU SCANIA FAZEKAS MOTORSPORT RACING
407 T4 X X SCANIA FAZEKAS MOTORSPORT RACING
407 T4 X X SCANIA FAZEKAS MOTORSPORT RACING
408 T4 Adwin HOONDERT NL DAF HOONDERT STAALBOUW
408 T4 Wilko HOEFNAGELS NL DAF HOONDERT STAALBOUW
408 T4 Jac GILLIS NL DAF HOONDERT STAALBOUW
410 T4 Noël ESSERS BE MAN ART OF SPEED
410 T4 Johan COONINX BE MAN ART OF SPEED
410 T4 Marc LAUWERS BE MAN ART OF SPEED
414 T4 Emiel MEGENS NL GINAF VAN VELSEN RALLY SPORT
414 T4 Aad VAN VELSEN NL GINAF VAN VELSEN RALLY SPORT
414 T4 Jos SCHOTANUS NL GINAF VAN VELSEN RALLY SPORT
415 T4 Francesco SIMONATO IT IVECO EUROCARGO RALLY RAID TEAM
415 T4 Pattono CORRADO IT IVECO EUROCARGO RALLY RAID TEAM
415 T4 Arnoletti MARCO IT IVECO EUROCARGO RALLY RAID TEAM
416 T4 Samir BENBEKHTI FR RENAULT MD RALLYE SPORT
416 T4 Ahmed BENBEKHTI FR RENAULT MD RALLYE SPORT
AFRICA ECO RACE 2018 ROUTE

A diversified course with as many sandy tracks and dunes as possible. Not very much liaisons and many starts and finishes from the bivouac
A precise road book, Spotlignt on Navigation
Two loop stages, A « 500 miles » stage without assistance
Authentic bivouacs in the middle of the Nature
12 stages
Rest day in Dakhla
6 000 kms
 
Tuesday January 2nd 2018
Stage 1: NADOR / DAR KAOURA: 639 km
Liaison: Nador / Ameziane: 5 km
Special stage: Ameziane / Merada: 92 km
Liaison: Merada / Dar Kaoura:496 km
Assistance: 623 km

Wednesday January 3rd 2018

Stage 2: DAR KAOURA / AGDAL: 479 km
Liaison: Dar Kaoura / Merzouga: 29 km
Special stage: Merzouga / Foum Zguid: 443 km
Liaison: Foum Zguid / Agdal: 7 km
Assistance: 433 km

Thursday January 4th 2018
Stage 3: AGDAL / ASSA: 421 km
Start at the bivouac
Special stage: Foum Zguid / Assa: 400 km
Liaison: Assa / Bivouac: 21 km
Assistance: 366 km

Friday January 5th 2018

Stage 4: ASSA / FORT CHACAL: 501 km
Start from the bivouac
Special stage: Assa / Fort Chacal: 499 km
Transfer to the bivouac : 2 km
Assistance: 583 km

Saturday January 6th 2018
Stage 5: FORT CHACAL / DAKHLA: 632 km
Liaison: Fort Chacal / Laayoune: 21 km
Special stage: Layoune / Bir Anzarane: 436 km
Liaison: Bir Anzarane / Dakhla: 175 km 
Assistance: 554 km

Sunday January 7th 2018
DAKHLA
Rest Day 

Monday January 8th 2018

Stage 6: DAKHLA / CHAMI: 650 km
Liaison: Dakhla / Boulanouar: 429 km
Special stage: Boulanouar / Chami: 211 km
Transfer to the bivouac: 10 km
Assistance: 561 km

Tuesday January 9th 2018
Stage 7: CHAMI / CHAMI: 508 km
Transfer to the start of the special stage: 2 km
Special stage: Chami / Chami: 486 km
Transfer to the bivouac: 20 km
Assistance: 0 km

Wednesday January 10th 2018
Stage 8: CHAMI / AMODJAR: 478 km
Transfer to the start of special stage: 2 km
Special stage: Chami / Azougui: 439 km
Liaison: Azougui / Amodjar: 37 km
Assistance: 699 km

Thursday January 11th 2018

Stage 9: AMODJAR / AMODJAR: 486 km
Liaison: Amodjar / Chinguetti: 73 km
Special stage : Chinguetti / Chinguetti: 34 km
Liaison: Chinguetti / Amodjar: 73 km
Assistance: 0 km 

Friday January 12th 2018

Stage 10: AMODJAR / AKJOUJT: 453 km
Liaison: Amodjar / Atar: 45 km
Special stage: Atar / Akjoujt: 408 km
Finish at the bivouac
Assistance: 208 km

Saturday January 13th 2018

Stage 11: AKJOUJT / ST LOUIS: 558 km
Start from the bivouac
Special stage: Akjoujt / Fimlit: 219 km
Liaison: Fimlit / St Louis: 339 km
Assistance: 501 km

Sunday January 14th 2018
Stage 12: ST LOUIS / DAKAR: 292 km
Liaison: St Louis / Niokhob: 230 km
Special stage: Niokhob / Lac Rose: 2 km
Transfer: Lac Rose / Dakar: 40 km
Assistance: 283 km
 
Video:  Monaco to Dakar On-Board and Drone video.



Copyright: Africa Eco Race


For its 10th edition, the Africa Eco Race will welcome a record number of competitors. More than a hundred vehicles, nearly 200 riders, drivers and co-drivers, will start from Monaco on December 31st. The big favorites of the event will be at the “rendez-vous”: Vladimir Vasilyev, winner in Car category in 2017, Gerard De Rooy in the category Truck and Pal Anders Ullevalseter with his KTM bike. However, many other could come and tickle them.

Car: Battle announced between 4X4 and Buggies

Over the last two editions, the four-wheel drives have had the last word. Last year Vladimir Vasilyev won at the wheel of his Mini. But this year, with the highly successful Toyota Overdrive and the Optimus armada of the MD Rallye team, without forgetting the SRT Buggy of Mathieu Serradori and the BDS Buggy by Lionel Baud, the race promises to be very interesting again.
For the first time, the Africa Eco Race will have a T3 category with ten SSV registered to the race. These off-road vehicles, halfway between quads and buggies, will be very comfortable in the second week and may shake up the hierarchy.

Bikes: A Pack of contenders to the podium

In the Bikes category, the main animators of the rally will be present for this 10th edition. Norway's Pal Anders Ullevalseter, a two-time winner of the event, is looking forward to winning again after young Gev Sella from the South Africa stopped him from a third consecutive victory in 2017. Tsuk Sella, Gev's brother, will try to keep the trophy within the family. Among the other contenders, there will be Italy's Paolo Ceci and Franco Picco, Morocco's Harite Gabari, Russia's Dmitri Agoshkov and Slovakia's Martin Benko. They will be serious contenders for the podium. Julien Sanchez, French resident in Senegal, could also come and tickle the pack.

Truck: Gerard De Rooy, as a favorite
The event of this 2018 Africa Eco Race undoubtedly come from the Truck category with about fifteen participants at the start. Among them, Gerard De Rooy, whose father Jan had won the first edition, will have the favor of predictions at the wheel of his Iveco. But the faithfulls of the rally, including Tomas Tomecek, three-time winner, the Hungarian Miklos Kovacs or the Belgian Noël Essers, will be at the “rendez vous” and will start with the advantage of knowing the field. And, we must not forget the Portuguese Elisabete Jacinto who will thirst for revenge after her retirement last year.

Two French women in Malle Moto
They will be over 10 competitors to start the 2018 Africa Eco Race in the Malle Moto class. These great adventurers will start for 14 days of racing without assistance. 
Among them, two French women, both came from the asphalt rather than the off-road, but will try to go from Monaco to Dakar: Lydia Truglio who will discover the rally and Julie Vanneken who has already seen the Lake Rose in 2017.





Official press release


A little more than two months from the start of the 2018 AFRICA ECO RACE, all the lights are green for this 10th edition to start in the best possible conditions on December 31st from the Principality of Monaco. Currently and until November 15th (closing date for registrations) there is some organizational turmoil. Indeed, the staff for the event is complete and the organizing team is in the process of preparing all the necessary equipment and planning all the logistics. Entries are still coming in via the online app and it can already be said that this 2018 edition will be a record in terms of participants. The recos team came back and announced that they had found some interesting new features as to the course. The TV broadcasting agreements with the different countries are finalized and again, there is excellent news about the broadcasts of the AFRICA ECO RACE. To sum it up, everything is on the right path.

ALREADY THE 10Th ANNIVERSARY OF THE AFRICA ECO RACE

The AFRICA ECO RACE was created by three lovers of Africa and Cross-Country Rallies, Jean Louis SCHLESSER, Hubert AURIOL and René METGE, who simply answered to the “call” of Morocco, Mauritania and Senegal wanted to see a great auto, motorbike, quad and truck adventure on fabulous playgrounds. Obviously, everything was not simple and in December 2008, the caravan of the Rally’s first edition was represented by a hundred vehicles and 300 people. But the race grew quietly, respecting the rules of safety and environment, but also considering the populations of the crossed countries. Today, nearly 250 vehicles and 600 people will board on the ferry on Sunday December 31st 2017 in Sète.

FIRST TWO DAYS IN MENTON

Like last year, the town of Menton will be the starting point of the 2018 AFRICA ECO RACE as the administrative and technical scrutineering will take place on December 29th and 30th. The sunniest town in France will once more set everything nicely to welcome all the participants as they should. Starting with the Tourism Office which negotiates the best rates with the various hotels in Menton. For the participants, a person from the Tourism Office will be in charge of reservations. The technical team of the town will also be arranging everything at the Rondelli stadium so that the visitors can be as close as possible to the competitors and their fabulous vehicles. After the scrutineering, competitors will head towards Monaco and place their vehicles in the Parc Ferme.

MONACO, 3rd YEAR FOR THE START
On Sunday December 31st 2017, in Monaco, the first motorcycle will be passing under the arch of the AFRICA ECO RACE on the Quai Antoine 1er, just in front of the Stars'N'Bars, a famous sportsbar restaurant in Monaco and also partner of the Rally since its first start in Monaco. One by one, each competitor in motorbike, atv, car and truck category, will be presented to the visitors attending the start ceremony before passing under the official arch in one of motorsport’s most representative place which is Monaco. A great moment of emotion at the beginning of the adventure, just like for the laureates and finishers, who will pass under the official arch for the finish at the Rose Lake in Dakar on Sunday January 14th 2018.

NEW THINGS PLANNED ON THE COURSE
After four weeks and several thousand kilometers crossing the tracks of Morocco, Mauritania and Senegal, the recos team of AFRICA ECO RACE just came back in early October with good news about the 2018 route. Here are some comments: 
"These "recos"on field have been very challenging in Mauritania since we have faced very strong heat and because we lost a lot of time because due to the gold rush that is currently taking place in the country. Indeed, Mauritanians are digging many holes in the desert seeking for the precious metal. This generates a multitude of tracks that lead nowhere, however, we are rather satisfied with the result since we can say that 1/3 of the 2018 route will be entirely new. 
In Morocco, even if it was complicated to make a fundamental change in the course since we are crossing the country from north to south in just 5 days, we have found some novelties on the first three stages, whereas the fourth special towards Laayoune has evolved and that the fifth stage is entirely new. We have indeed gone to the maximum of what is possible in terms of tracks in the great south of Morocco, finding a nice track which was used in the good days of a great rally going from Paris to Dakar! 
But it is in Mauritania that we note most of the new things. Starting with the traditional stage out of the border that will be 100% new. There will also be the stage called '' 500 Miles '' over two days with a “Park Fermé” between the two stages. Then a loop of 350 km around Amodjar which should be the highlight of the 2018 edition, both in terms of the beauty of the landscapes and difficulties. This stage will be composed of 95% of sand and competitors will find huge dunes as they rarely saw in the first nine editions. Also, the start of a stage in the heart of an incredible canyon will also allow the assistances to see amazing landscapes. Finally, although the timing was tight on the last Mauritanian stage because of the border crossing with Senegal, we were still able to change it a bit. Throughout the recos, we sought to avoid rocks as much as we could in Morocco and the camel grass in Mauritania. We could not avoid everything but beyond that, I can assure you that the participants will, once again, find what they are looking for, that only Africa can offer!"

AFRICA ECO RACE ON EUROSPORT AND MOTORSPORT TV

The media coverage of an event such as the AFRICA ECO RACE is obviously essential for the competitors, their sponsors and the racing partners. AFRICA ECO RACE has always had its own TV production team and sends footage via satellite, every day from the field in Africa with programs edited by journalists for TV channels in different countries. Broadcasts of these programs vary each year depending on the agreements that can be obtained, most of the time, from the teams or availability in program schedules. For its 10th edition, in addition to the usual agreements, the AFRICA ECO RACE will be broadcasted on EUROSPORT (59 countries) and EUROSPORT 2 (46 countries), but also on MOTORSPORT TV (40 countries). Of course, the programs broadcasted on these channels will also be available at any time on their Internet portals. Moreover, a live show will be performed every night from the bivouac and will be broadcasted on the Facebook page of the AFRICA ECO RACE.





Source: Africa Eco Race 2018
 

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