Tuareg Rally 2013 – preparing: training day 2

I was a bit overconfident again… Today we had our second training day. Timi and I where doing two training sessions together, one after breakfast and one after lunch. At the end of the day I spent one session on myself to train some speed in the dunes and on the pistes. Some locals where watching this training…

Let’s start at the beginning. Timi did very well on the first smaller dunes but this was just to warm up and soon we both got several times stuck in some really soft and difficult dunes. She could improve her skills in picking up the bike, turning it around, pushing it down, picking it up again and so on… This is a very exhausting matter.

After 2 hours the batteries of Timi where pretty empty and a little frustration and disappointment was recognizable (she is a very ambitious woman). She showed a lot of willpower and perseverance. I was really proud of her, these dunes are not as easy as the ones we know from Morocco. I think next Saturday there will be a real battle in the dunes here in the dunes of Douz when around 190 motorcycle racers will start for the first special and some first timers will have to suffer a lot.

In the afternoon session, after a good lunch, Timi got her energy back and her confidence was growing again. She had a lot of fun, reconicebly at her big smiles. All in all a very good performance on her second day in the dunes.

As Timi was not in the mood for another session in the dunes, this was the moment for me to decide to have a quick round on myself through the dunes in a speedy session, which I enjoyed a lot. After a very satisfying training ride of 1,5 hours I was a little overmotivated and fell of the bike while making a wheely (like I do every second year ) on a sandy piste for the local public (shame on me). So I fell pretty hard on my back and it hurts a lot. I think I’m lucky that I can start on Saturday and it is probably the nessecairy signal from above, that tells me that I have to control my emotions more again, like I did in the Africa Race last January. Always when things are going well I get overexited and then this kind of things do happen… (me stupido).

Tomorrow, Tony Schattat will help me to fix the bike, especially some broken parts on the navigation tower. The disassembladge of the broken plastic and bend metal parts could be done by myself this evening. And tomorrow I will start asking around in the bivouac if some friendly fellow racers can help me out with selling me some parts for replacement of the broken ones. If not available, we will have to go to town and let them be custom made by a local craftsman. In Douz there are more car workshops then anything else. It’s the most important trade in town, by the looks of it .

Tuareg Rally 2013 – preparing: training day 1

Today we had a perfect day to train in the dunes and on the piste near Douz. Polytimi did very well on her first day in the sometimes very soft Tunisian dunes. I’m really curious how she will perform in the race. Tomorrow we will have another training day, we will go to Gsar Ghilane and back, approximately 200km dunes and piste. This will give her a good impression, of what the race will look like.

Speaking about my feeling of today’s training: I’m really confident for the upcoming days. I hope my right hand will be fit for the whole race, so I can perform without pain. The driving in the dunes went quit good and on the piste at high speed (151km/h), I felt very well. Now I have to keep a cool mind and drive at 80-90% of maximum speed in the race.

At the end of the day, we both had problems with the clutch. Timi got a little nervous, but after filling up the oil reservoir of the clutch, everything was OK and she was relaxed again.

Tuareg Rally 2013 – preparing: 3 days before the start

Two members already arrived at Tunesia.

The other two members are already at the airport.
Tony and Edward at airport