Big Shock Racing team group up in Jeddah, where the 42nd Dakar Rally will start on Sunday, January 5. Truck pilot Martin Macik with his navigator Frantisek Tomasek have acclimated on the spot for a few days. And on Thursday, they finally greeted rider Jan Brabec, race mechanic David Svanda and other members of the team. The complete team immediately went to work. It was necessary to pick up Martins truck, Brabec’s motorbike and all assistance vehicles from the organizers. Unfortunately, Martin’s Dakar truck called Charles and the Camping Truck in which the team has background facilities were impassable and it took a while to get them operational. The camping truck was lost in traffic after that. This was followed by a rocket transfer of the truck crew to the shakedown – Dakar warm-up. “We drove in and did everything we needed. Charles worked well, performance and chassis. I’m so glad about that. It was great, we tried also few jumps to be sure. I’m looking forward to the start, ”says Martin Macik. Jan Brabec missed the shakedown and devoted the time saved to rest after a difficult journey and preparing for technical scrutineering. All of the team vehicles went smoothly thru during scrutineering on Friday morning. The Big Shock Racing team managed the pre-start duties very well, the bivouac is in a great mood and everyone is looking forward to the Saturday podium and Sunday start.
They’ve given us Charles
Picking up racing vehicles from the port after a cruise from Marseille was a quick process for the Big Shock Racing team. The yellow vehicles of the Czech team remained the last in the parking lot. However, the organizers’ drivers left the lights on after the unloading to Charles, Martin Macík’s racing truck, and the camping truck so that the batteries were completely discharged and it took a while for the team mechanics to put the vehicles back into operation. Service MAN, Toyota journalists and Mercedes with facilities for Brabec motorcycle equipment survived the cruise in order. While moving from port to bivouac one of the truck got lost when his batteries got some problem again, and as the last truck of the team with a driver without a telephone and navigation, he stuck at the crossroad. It took about an hour for the rest of the team to track him down and escort him to his destination. But then everything went as it should.
The joy from shake down
After a happy reunion in the bivouac, the racing truck moved to a shakedown. This allows the crews to test their vehicles in the local conditions for the last time, tune in to the race and, above all, to test whether the long ferry cruise has left consequences on the racing cars and bikes that the mechanics could remove before the start. After about an hour’s drive, navigator Frantisek Tomasek reported: “The surface is very treacherous here, moving from soft sand to hard stones. Jump across the dune from the sand to the rocks. In that hour we drove through all the terrain you could meet. Driving 500 km will be interesting. But Charles works really well. We don’t know its limits yet. ”
On Friday scrutineering are on the program. Already in Marseille the teams passed the first part of the administrative and technical checks, where it was necessary to place the organizer stickers on trucks, cars and motorbikes, racing vehicles were weighed, equipment for navigation devices and other necessities were checked. But the second part of the scrutineering, including GPS training, administrative duties, payment and document verification, medical examinations or official photo shoot of riders for organizers’ needs, was waiting for the Big Shock Racing team on Friday. Part of the routine process, which team boss Martin Macik older completed for 18 times, was a detailed lecture on how to proceed in the event of assistance to injured competitors. Thanks to years of experience Martin’s truck, Jan’s motorbike and assistance vehicles passed without any major complications. The time remaining until Sunday is dedicated to final rest, so that everything is perfectly prepared for the long awaited start of the Dakar 2020.