Debutant Aliyyah Koloc scored her second top 10 finish in the T3 - Lightweight Prototypes category in what is her first Dakar. The 18-year-old was 10th today, moving up to thirty-second overall. Josef Machacek finished 23rd today and remains 11th overall.
Despite the fact that she is a newcomer to the Dakar Rally and is only eighteen, Aliyyah Koloc is driving like a seasoned pro throughthe Saudi Arabian desert. On today's stage she left behind names like Red Bull stars Seth Quintero from the USA and Chilean three-time Dakar winner Francisco "Chaleco" Lopez. "We treated the car well yesterday, so we went into the second part of the marathon stage without any major technical problems. I tried to go faster today. I really love the dunes, I felt great in the car. I feel like it was my best day of the Dakar so far. I am happy," said the young driver. It also helped that she slept well in the makeshift bivouac between the two parts of the marathon stage. "If there is nothing wrong with your car, the marathon stage is really great fun. I also got to enjoy the job of a mechanic a little bit as I had to attend the Can-Am service in the evening," Aliyyah Koloc explainedwith a laugh.
Josef Machacek understood the magic of today's date at the start. "On Friday the 13th, they started our stage by checking the flame retardant underwear and I wore my old socks. So I had to go back to get the right ones. After the start, our engine went on two cylinders. We had to come back from the first dune, stop and fix it. We fixed one coil and went for a drive," the six-time Dakar champion described his difficult day. "After about two kilometres we hit the front of the car really hard. Fortunately, that was our last problem today and then we drove as fastas we could. It was very difficultbut we really like it," said a satisfied Josef Machacek.
Navigator David Schovánek had only words of praise for his pilot: "Today was really challenging. Long dunes, high, hard. We had some critical moments. We had to go down, turn around and go up again. But Pepa handled everything beautifully and the two of us put it together nicely."
Source Buggyra Team