Africa Race: on the way to the ferry



We left today at 3:00 am in order to reach the ferry in Almeria by 7:00 pm with all caravan. At the beginning we had a small problem with one of assistant cars, but then everything worked out all right, and we reached the ferry. In the afternoon, other competitors began to overtake our caravan, exceeding the permitted speed, and Evgeniy Kharlamov said that we should just get used, not to look at what others are doing and continue your present course.

On arrival, we learned about the loading delay. René Metge anxiously reported that documents were not prepared and we would start being loaded not earlier than 11 pm. And then we will have an obligatory briefing when everybody will be loaded. Information on starting time and details of tomorrow will be reported there. It is does not matter for us, but the crew members have to sleep. Here it happens quite often. Nothing foretold troubles, but suddenly we could not start up the sandy assistant car (recent days, many people were admired it). As a result, due to the push start on the area densely filled with cars we could start the engine. Guys have to resolve the problem with the starter on the ferry. There were no other events today, so I keep the yesterday's promise to write about what Semen Yakubov spoke with the team...

S. Yakubov: "Africa is very different from America, and if we compare the route of the American "Dakar" with the classic one, where Africa Race takes place, we can say for sure that in Africa, everything is more serious and more difficult. "Dakar" is also very difficult because of very strong competitors. Africa - it is a dream, you will feel, why we always wanted to return there. I envy you even. You must remember that your goal is to reach the finish, if you will do it, you will successfully complete your task for 100 %. Well, as usual, if you will do everything at your own pace, it may happen that you will bring a good result. You will be able to do everything; you have more experience than us, when we were just like you. You passed Silk Way Rally many times, some of you were in South America, and it is definitely the best trainings of all possible.

Everyone should know exactly what he must do, for what he is responsible, but if there is a gap in the team, it is necessary to join immediately and it is does not matter what is the work, it is important to do it.

Tomorrow you will have a very difficult way; I will not rest on the details. Your task is to get aboard, not to break the rules, to keep pace, not to relax at the necessary stops. The way is long, you should sleep a little, fatigue will affect. The main thing is not to fall asleep at the wheel. If you feel that you get drowsy, do not heroize yourself, you should inform Vasiliy Kvachev about it, he will find someone to replace you. The destiny of the team depends on you and if there is an accident, Heaven forbid, the race could come to the end. This is not your personal business to continue to fight against sleep, your responsibility is to report immediately about it, and therefore, you help the team to solve the main problem.

I prevent you that you have to do it earlier rather than later. I do not give advice, I strictly prevent. If someone is left behind and is late for the ferry, you have to catch up – to be loaded on the next ferry and catch up. Take all necessary measures in order to arrive at the bivouac and to help the team. In any emergency situation that can happen to you, the first thing you should do is to inform the management about it. They can help you with advice and, most important, they will know about you. There have to be no vanity neither on the road nor on a bivouac, and especially on the route.

"Your speech has to be reputable not only with others, but also among yourselves. This is the law of our team and you have to comply with it. I prevent especially Svetlana and Oksana:)

I am very glad that you will have such a great race. After a long break, we return to Africa. In Africa, the race is much more interesting, more dangerous, more intense, all guys are jealous now. When you will be on the Pink Lake, say it hallo from us with Olga, really I miss it. It remembers our first arrivals to the finish line, we were very inexperienced but we were intent on it. We have mastered this track and, perhaps, the most important thing in our sporting life, we reached the finish on the Rose Lake.

Your task is to reach the finish line and to have the feelings that we had when we saw it. This is a big event in my life, I am sure that it will be bright and remarkable event in your life.

I wish you good luck. I hope that we will be in high favour with God. Of course you will have difficulties. But I am sure that you will do everything right. I will follow closely your work, I will rejoice, I will worry about you.