Car 2 Climbs to 5th in Accumulated Rankings Overall
A looped course based out of San Juan de Marcona was scheduled for day 4 of the Peruvian stages which has been extremely challenging so far. Car 2 crewed by Teruhito Sugawara and Mitsugu Takahashi, which climbed to 9th place in the overall trucks category on Jan. 8, delivered solid performance again on this day's SS. The truck finished 4th overall and moved up to 5th place overall in accumulated rankings (results are provisional).
Teruhito Sugawara said, ‘We've made SS finishes at 4th place in the past, and I think this is a great result for where we are at right now. It just goes to show how good the truck is. It's unfortunate that we've only got one truck left in the race, but we will keep up our pace and fight on.’
Car 1 piloted by Yoshimasa Sugawara and Katsumi Hamura?which encountered problems and was rendered immobile?underwent repairs on site, and arrived safely at the bivouac in Marcona.
This day, contestants headed for the coast to the east of the bivouac on a 108 km liaison where they started the SS in grid starts. There were 15 motorbikes in each start for the motorbikes category, four cars each in starts for cars, and two trucks each in starts for trucks. After racing for about 15 kilometers along the coast, the SS took racers inland and then through intermountain areas, finishing near the bivouac for a total SS distance of 330 km.
Teams were faced with a variety of conditions including rough terrain with hard surfaces that could potentially damage vehicles, huge dune crossings, and fesh-fesh on dried riverbeds. The stage also proved to be very challenging for navigators.
The Car 2 crew completed this difficult stage at a cautious but brisk pace. Partially owing to the fact that they were able to trace GPS waypoints that were difficult to find, the crew delivered stellar performance in this SS, finishing 4th overall in the trucks category.
Mitsugu Takahashi said, ‘The GPS waypoints towards the end of the SS were difficult to find, and in one particular area, we saw many vehicles that seemed to be lost. We decided to go a bit further ahead which turned out to be the right decision as we were able to trace the waypoint successfully and climb up to 4th position. I think there was an element of luck too.’