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Fenix Rally 2023:Leg 4 - The marathon
Strong winds made the stage very difficult
Fenix Rally 2023 faced the first part of the marathon challenge, where the competitors drove the stage to a dedicated desert bivouac, where they spent the night without the help of the assistance crews. However, the initial plan was to drive almost 140 kilometers in the sands, but because of heavy winds in the areas, the route has to be modified – not in terms of length, but using different tracks, for safety reasons.
The windy day was very good for Matthew Gird in the bike class. The pilot from South Africa managed to set the best time, finishing 5 minutes in front the French rider Sebastien Tocaben. Third for the day was another Frenchman – Frederic Reinheimer, so we saw a triple win for KTM. Tocaben is still the leader in the overall, 3 minutes and a half in front of Gird.
Rafal Jawien was once again unbeatable in the quad class. The pilot of Polaris Polska Racing Team finished with a lead of 6 minutes to Nicolas Martinez from France (Polaris), and some 10 seconds more to his teammate and compatriot Marcin Wilkolek. Jawien is provisional leader with over half an hour to Gaetan Martinez from France (4th place for the day).
Poland was the country triumphing also in the SSV class of the marathon stage, as Jacek Zak (Polaris) was the fastest on the windy track. Second for the day was his fellow countryman Maciej Stolarski (Can-Am) and the third place went to Fredereic Henricy (Polaris). In the general rankings, to Dalius Olechnavicus (Can-Am, 5th place for the day) from Lithuania is still on the top, 4:32 minutes in front of Henricy.
In the car class Doncho Canev (Suzuki proto) claimed his second stage win from Fenix Rally 2023. The pilot from Bulgaria had more than one minute advance to Mindaugas Povilaitis (Toyota) from Lithuania. Daily podium was completed by the dutchman Rik Van Den Brink (Mitsubishi). However, overall “king”, with more than comfortable 42 minutes advance to the closest competitor is sitting Tarvo Klaasimae from Estonia (MOS1 proto), despite his 5th place in the stage.
Among the trucks in Fenix Rally 2023, Steffen Braun (Germany, Unimog) once again was fastest on the stage, with some 9 minutes advance to his compatriot Matthias Koerber (MAN). Third best time was for Klaas Steinhoefel (MAN), also from Germany. Braun continues to be on top of the rankings.
Leg 5, which is the second part of the marathon stage, will lead the participants to the city of Douz, where will be the last camp of Fenix Rally 2023. Once again, the orga crew has to modified the stage, because the wind storm in the area continues. Thus, instead of the initially planed 121 kilometers, the competitors will drive 60 kms, finishing south from the city.
Source RBI / Fenix Rally