Tough day at office for Iveco’s Van Genugten
Van Genugten without windshield behind De Rooy
Ton van Genugten quickly had to give up his second position in the second stage of the Dakar Rally. At about 50 km in the 342 km long special stage between Pisco and San Juan de Marcona the hood of the Iveco hit the windshield. Petronas Team De Rooy Iveco teammates Gerard de Rooy and Federico Villagra were able to pass Van Genugten. That gave De Rooy an excellent second place, with Villagra coming in fourth. Van Genugten lost ten minutes and finished fifth. Maurik van den Heuvel made an impressive advance from eighteenth to eight.
The bonnets on the noses of the Iveco’s are of a new model and run just a bit further against the windshield. In the first stage, Federico Villagra also had to deal with it. “After I had the first crack, the bonnet once again hit the window. With a hard braking we have tapped out the window”, says Van Genugten immediately after the finish. “It was actually not so bad to ride without a window. Nice and cool. Fortunately, we were among motorcyclists and a few SSVs, so there was not much dust.”
Due to the delay of Van Genugten, Villagra and De Rooy could pass him by. “I hooked up behind by Gerard,” says Van Genugten. “So I only had some dust coming from his truck, but from him it’s okay.”
Not long after De Rooy had passed Van Genugten, he also overtook his Argentine teammate, so that a complete Iveco train hunted for the Kamaz of Eduard Nikolaev. However, he had already gone so far that he was able to get up to his second stage victory without being threatened. De Rooy was able to keep up the speed with free track ahead of him. “I have a nice ride,” he said. “The suspension was not ideal; a bit too soft. As a result, the car hit the suspension several times during descents.”
There were quite a few of them in the very varied stage, with dunes and winding sand paths. “Also a part with nasty cuts: terrain where Kamaz is traditionally good,” De Rooy analysed. “In the last part before the finish were a few steep step downs where things could go wrong, but if you were paying attention, it wasn’t a problem.”
Van Genugten made a mistake there, with which he got away lucky. One of the steps he saw too late and the Iveco Powerstar made a big blow. He was left with just a painful big toe. “The doctor should have a look at that tonight, because it feels like that toe will fall off as soon as I take off my shoe.”
In the standings, Van Genugten now occupies fifth place at 10.35 from Nikolaev. De Rooy is second at 4.23 from the Russian. Villagra comes in third place at 7.23. Maurik van den Heuvel closed the second day in tenth place overall.