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Rallying in the desert of Tunisia
Can you feel the smell of the sand, the noise of the wind and the mystic beauty of the desert? Have you ever dreamed about this type of freedom - the light blue limitless sky, infinite horizon and fullness of joy?
Fenix Rally 2021: a new era of the desert rallies just began
The newest event of RBI Sport was no doubt a great success, bringing new terrains and new emotions
The inaugural edition of Fenix Rally in Tunisia offered new terrains and new emotions to the competitors, which usually everybody sees on the routes of Breslau Poland and Balkan Offroad. The newest event of RBI Sport and especially a brain child of Alexander Kovatchev took place in the middle of March in the region of Douz – the city labeled as “the door to Sahara”.
Tunisia welcomed Fenix warmly and with full support from the national and the local authorities. The race was under the partnership of the Tunisian Automobile Federation (FTA), the Tunisian Motorcycle Federation (FTM), the National Automobile Club of Tunisia and the country’s National Tourist Office. The police, the National Guard office and the army guaranteed full support for a successful and safe rally. But there weren’t any concerns as the local people was more than happy to have such a world class event just in front of their homes and everybody offered help to the competition.
Six racing days and 10 timed sections were in the menu of the rally, including a marathon stage, which took all the participants in a desert camp without any help from their assistance crews. Over 1000 kilometers against the clock and perfect mixture of sands, dunes and fast tracks were combined with technical navigation and perfect road books. Fortunately, there weren’t serious accidents during the rally and almost all the participants reached the finish in Douz.
In the car open class first of all, the desert rally veteran 𝙅𝙚𝙧𝙤𝙢𝙚 𝙋𝙚𝙡𝙞𝙘𝙝𝙚𝙩 showed what it means to have long years of experience in cross country competitions. The second place went to 𝘼𝙜𝙤𝙨𝙩𝙞𝙣𝙤 𝙍𝙞𝙯𝙯𝙖𝙧𝙙𝙞 and his exotic Porsche proto. The Italian made very good progress during the rally, and pushed in the last stages, to climb on the podium. But even more interesting was the situation with 𝘼𝙙𝙖𝙢 𝘽𝙤𝙢𝙗𝙖 (BMW) from Poland, who completed the podium just in the last stage, beating the Bulgarian Dessislav Slavchev (Mercedes).
In the car limited category, it was 𝙇𝙖𝙪𝙧𝙚𝙣𝙩 𝘼𝙪𝙗𝙤𝙪𝙚𝙭 from France (Mercedes) who won the title in front of the Polish pilot 𝙂𝙧𝙯𝙚𝙜𝙤𝙧𝙯 𝘽𝙧𝙤𝙘𝙝𝙤𝙘𝙠𝙞 (Toyota) and the German 𝙁𝙧𝙞𝙩𝙯 𝘽𝙚𝙘𝙠𝙚𝙧 (Toyota). As the teams from this class couldn’t compete with the powerful T1 protos, they showed that you can take such a long rally with a conventional off-road machine, if you have enough courage and are smart on the racetrack.
In the most crowded class – those of the SSVs, it was 𝙇𝙞𝙤𝙣𝙚𝙡 𝘽𝙖𝙪𝙙, who took the maiden victory of Fenix Rally. The pilot from France took 5 from 6 stage wins, behind the wheel of the powerful PH Sport Zephyr, leaving no chance to his opponents with over one hour advance at the finish. Second in the “petite” class became the driver from Netherlands 𝙇𝙞𝙤𝙣𝙚𝙡 𝘽𝙖𝙪𝙙 as Lithuanian 𝘿𝙖𝙡𝙞𝙪𝙨 𝙊𝙡𝙚𝙘𝙝𝙣𝙖𝙫𝙞𝙘𝙞𝙪𝙨 completed the overall top 3. Both pilots counted on Can-Am vehicles.
In the bike class, there was the Dutchman 𝘽𝙧𝙖𝙢 𝙫𝙖𝙣 𝙙𝙚𝙧 𝙒𝙤𝙪𝙙𝙚𝙣 (Sherco), who eliminate the competition of two French riders: 𝙇𝙞𝙤𝙣𝙚𝙡 𝙈𝙖𝙣𝙨𝙪𝙮 (Sherco) and 𝙍𝙤𝙢𝙖𝙞𝙣 𝙈𝙪𝙧𝙖𝙩𝙤𝙣 (Husaberg). Van der Wouden was very constant and this paid off with more than 2 hours difference with the closest followers.
In the ATV class, it was Lithuanian domination, as 𝙍𝙤𝙢𝙪𝙖𝙡𝙙𝙖𝙨 𝙆𝙖𝙧𝙪𝙯𝙞𝙨 (Can-Am) took the victory of Fenix Rally 2021 and his compatriot 𝘼𝙙𝙤𝙢𝙖𝙨 𝙂𝙖𝙣𝙘𝙞𝙚𝙧𝙞𝙪𝙨 (CFMOTO) who get the “silver medal”. The third place was for the Polish rider 𝙈𝙞𝙠𝙤𝙡𝙖𝙟 𝙆𝙧𝙮𝙨𝙞𝙠 (Can-Am).