The Dutch Dakar team Mammoet Rallysport is busily preparing for the world's toughest rally: Dakar 2013. Harskamper Martin van den Brink will get behind the wheel of his Ginaf X2222 again on 5 January 2013 in an attempt to set new records. Until then the days will be long and the nights short at the team's brand-new workshop.
Van den Brink hopes to be battling it out with the leading drivers for the fifth time in a row. In previous Dakar rallies the entrepreneur has already shown that he is at home in this environment, even though tyre problems put paid to the possibility of a top 10 ranking last year. “2013 will offer new opportunities, however. After Dakar we got down to business with a view to carrying out tests at the Silk Way Rally in Russia, in which we took part in July. We arrived there with a view to it being a trial, but still managed to finish in tenth place. We gathered a great deal of experience that we are now putting to use again for the upcoming Dakar”, Martin explains.
At the Dakar in 2012 the team had to contend with frequent tyre problems: as a result of overheating and leaks, the team had to make a huge effort to ensure that the full one thousand horsepower could be used to get them around the course. “We seem to have rectified this problem”, says Erwin Lagerweij. “We have moved the exhaust to the rear of the truck so the exhaust gases no longer have to pass the tyres. That makes a considerable difference to the temperature. We have also replaced the entire tyre deflation system and with the help of the experts from VB-Airsuspension have worked on the air suspension. The modifications to the air suspension should ensure that the race truck can travel faster over the course and that Martin, Peter and Arjan are more comfortable, which will help improve their endurance. It is important to stay as alert as possible, as dangers can appear at any moment and the days are long and hard. Every little improvement helps and we are therefore extremely pleased with the huge effort put in by the VB-Airsuspension team.”
If you were thinking that the team would be stepping into the same truck for the fifth time in a row this year, you would be mistaken: both trucks were stripped back to the chassis and rebuilt, leaving nothing to chance. “The only thing that is the same as previous years is the number plate”, grins Martin.
For an overview of all modifications and technical specifications follow the link
Take a look at the Mammoet Rallysport website here.