OULAD DRISS – OULAD DRISS
OULAD DRISS – OULAD DRISS
The Rallye has never ventured this far south but the 30th anniversary called for something new, so here we are in search of new horizons.
After crossing the Draa, the competitors will have to rely on top-notch navigation. Features are low or shrouded in mist, hidden by the heat haze or erased by the wind. Because in this region, everyone knows that the wind very often shows up uninvited to spoil the party.
And sand… sand is everywhere. Yes, there are a few fast, easy zones, but they are short and far between. Here it is dune after dune of soft, powdery sand, dotted with camel grass or tamarisk huddling in the bottom of the troughs. Staying on course will be no easy task. The Gazelles will have to use dead reckoning to know when to head north towards more hospitable terrain. This is no simple rest leg between two marathon legs; today’s performance will be crucial because, while the final results may not be decided, some top contenders are certain to have their hopes dashed on reaching the bivouac this evening. This leg is sure to mark this anniversary edition.
At 8 PM, only 4 teams have not yet reached the bivouac.
The furthest, 231, has been joined by an assistance team who are following them as they make their way back.
The Gazelles of Team 109 headed east-northeast instead of east-southeast after CP7. Team 263 is approaching the bivouac, followed by an assistance team.
As for Team 218, they have stopped in Mhamid. Team 231 should cross paths with them around 8:30.
No teams are expected to spend the night outside the bivouac
A large number of teams did not find CP6 or reached it too late (after 6:00) and are heading back to the bivouac by trail.
Some teams, such as 218, who gave a great performance in the oued, must be very disappointed.
Team 223 passed CP5 at 3:30, successfully crossed the oued, but never found CP6. On the other hand, some teams found the CP6 of every route.
Other teams made it all the way to CP7 and are also heading back via the trail.
An assistance vehicle will stay out on the course this evening to keep an eye on Team 231, who are expected back very late.
Quad Class leaders Betty and Sonia, Team 39, are following near-perfect headings.
In 4X4 Class, top teams 267 (Jeanette and Rachelle) and 216 (Tania and Régine) are neck and neck with outstanding performances, despite a wrong heading by Team 267 at CP 7.
Meanwhile, after a 4-hour drive from the bivouac, the radio team has finished installing a radio relay for the marathon on a high point near an area known locally as “the Sacred Oasis.
Not many teams are still out on the course. There are around 15 teams between CP5 and 6, while most of them are between CP6 and 7.
Team 309 has called for technical assistance, and are probably stuck in the sand
It is very hot today, with a high of 40°. Visibility is good despite the heat.
It is just 3:10 and the first Gazelles are already back at the bivouac. Some of them gave up for the day.
Team 236 drove straight to CP5, had to search for CP6, and is now 3 km too far west for CP7
Team 502 is driving in circles looking for CP1. Team 511 reached the first 3 checkpoints but decided to go back to the bivouac.
Team 123 on Route E made it to CP3 and 4 without a hitch, but appear to have plotted CP5 incorrectly on the map, which could cost them dearly…
Team 243 has finally reached CP5 and is heading east towards CP6.
Meanwhile, Team 273 still hasn’t found CP5.
Gazelles 176 and 178 are approaching checkpoints 6A and 6E respectively. Instead of crossing the Draa, which would have been 16 km but risky, they decided to go around, which cost them 40 km.
Team 33 only reached CP4 at 11:30 and still have 17 km to go to get to CP5. At this rate, will they manage to hit all the day’s checkpoints before they close?
Teams 243 and 273 also missed their CP5 and are searching in the wrong place.
Team 134 overshot their CP5, realized their mistake, and have just turned around. They appear to be heading for the checkpoint but it has cost them 7 extra km.
Team 263 made the prudent decision after CP4F to take a slight detour south, costing them 2 extra km but avoiding the dunes. They have covered 9 km, 17 km more to go to reach their goal.
Team 209 on Route B passed checkpoint 5 at 10:20 and decided to take a straight heading to CP6, but has veered north-east.
5 other teams on the same route (118, 119, 132, 138 and 209) have done the same thing.
Four SSV teams are heading for CP6.
Team 302 forced to withdraw because of mechanical issues.
Quad 37 missed their checkpoint, realized their mistake, turned around and just hit CP5.
The 4 SSV teams are on their way to CP6 and the team in the lead is about to enter the sand.
Several teams are nearing CP5
The Quad-SSV teams are less than 7 km from CP5V
Teams 118, 138 and 209 have reached CP5.
Fire truck 240 on Route E has passed CP5 and is heading north-west to CP6.
1/4 of the teams are still at CP4 and most of the 4x4s are between 4 and 5.
No mechanical issues for the moment.
Team 265 who were driving a Toyota KDJ90 withdrew from the competition this morning for personal reasons
Team 104 (D-Max Isuzu ) withdrew from the competition this morning with a broken engine.
The first Gazelles have passed the first 2 automatic CPs that lead the way to Oued Draa. This is the first time the Rallye has ventured into this area, which features some large zones of difficult sand.