NEWS
PRESS RELEASE 5 / 2019 TAKLIMAKAN RALLY
Source:TAKLIMAKAN RALLY05/31/2019
PRESS RELEASE 5 / 2019 TAKLIMAKAN RALLY
Makit (Xinjiang/China), May 23rd 2019
MAKIT > MAKIT : 447,77 km
Liaison : 87,14 km
SS : 333,55 km
Liaison : 27,08 km
TAKLAMAKAN DESERT WAS UNFORGIVING!

2019 Taklimakan Rally's competitors entered the Taklamakan desert for the first time during this third stage. After a long and trying special stage, the Chinese crew Yangui Liu / Sha He (BAIC) takes the lead of the overall ranking following their victory. Armand Monleón (KTM) continues as a lone ranger in the motorcycle category. The fourth stage has been cancelled since many competitors still haven't joined the bivouac in Makit.

Forming a loop around Makit, the organizers had warned that the third stage would be one of the most difficult in this Taklimakan Rally edition. The timed sector of the day - 333.55 kilometres - included more than 100 kilometres in the dunes of Taklamakan. The very soft sand, the fesh-fesh zones, and the many brittle sections have made it complicated for the competitors.

Yangui Liu / Sha He (BAIC) performed the best operation of the day by winning the scratch. "This stage was very difficult. We did really well without having to get the shovels out", said the winner of the day, also new leader in the overall ranking and always very comfortable in the sand. The stage was however fatal to many favourites who at this stage of the competition have almost lost any hope to achieve the final victory. This is true for the crew Han Wei / Liao Min (Geely), who concedes nearly 1:30 to the winners of the day. Christian Lavieille and Jean-Pierre Garcin (BAIC) suffered but they managed to secure a second place with 5'52'' behind their teammates, and now occupy that same spot in the overall ranking. "It was a very demanding stage. We had to deflate a few times. We made long section in low gear in order to cross the dunes chains". The two-wheel drive buggies struggled on a terrain that is far from being adapted to the qualities of their vehicles. The first of them, Xu Aili and Wen Zhigang (Geely) complete the podium, more than 40 minutes after the winners.

Stage 3 of the 2019 Taklimakan Rally was even more selective for the two-wheelers with only nine bikes managing to finish the stage. Armand Monleón (KTM) is ahead of his teammate Zhang Min (KTM) by more than 1h30. "The goal was to get back to the bivouac. I had to stop several times to cool my bike. I adapt to the conditions", explained the Spanish pilot. The third place goes to Yakenan who finished 2:39 after the first. In the overall ranking, Armand Monleón (KTM) secured his lead over teammate Zhang Min (KTM). The beautiful performance of the day goes to Ma Binwen, fifth and first quad of the stage.

While some thirty cars and a dozen motorcycles were still in the stage, the race management team has made the decision to cancel stage 4 originally scheduled for tomorrow. The competitors will therefore get an extra day to rest, recharge their batteries and refit their vehicles in Makit, before heading back on Sunday May 26, to reach Hotan during stage 5, 548.19 km long with 324.58 km of selective section.
#NewHorizon #TaklimakanRally
CARS
Provisional classification stage 3
1. Liu Yangui (CHN) / Sha He (CHN), BAIC, 6h09'43''
2. Christian Lavieille (FRA) / Jean-Pierre Garcin (FRA), BAIC, + 5'52''
3. Xu Aili (CHN) / Wen Zhigang (CHN), Geely, + 40'51''
4. Zhang Lei (CHN) / Xiang Liang (CHN), Toyota, + 57'33''
5. Han Jianqiang (CHN) /Chen Qingkai (CHN), Geely, + 1h09'16''
 
Provisional overall classification after stage 3
1. Liu Yangui (CHN) / Sha He (CHN), BAIC, 10h59'40''
2. Christian Lavieille (FRA) / Jean-Pierre Garcin (FRA), BAIC, +4'04''
3. Xu Aili (CHN) / Wen Zhigang (CHN), Geely, + 1h04'47''
4. Zhang Guoyu (CHN) / Liu Yuan (CHN), BAIC, +1h26'03''
5. Han Wei (CHN) / Liao Min (CHN), Geely, + 1h28'35''
 
MOTORBIKES
Provisional classification stage 3
1. Armand Monleón (ESP), KTM, 7h04'39"
2. Zhang Min (CHN), KTM, + 1h36'12''
3. Yakenan (CHN), KTM, + 2h39'11''
4. Fang Mingji (CHN), KTM, +2h48'00''
5. Ma Binwen (CHN), Polaris, +3h38'59''
 
Provisional overall classification after stage 3
1. Armand Monleón (ESP), KTM, 12h01'10''
2. Zhang Min (CHN), KTM, + 2h17'12''
3. Yakenan (CHN), KTM, + 3h20'52''
 
PHOTOS : HUZI / SONG YONGCHUAN
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