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Offline Aquatic

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a BMW G450X wins the Africa Rally
« on: January 28, 2009, 09:15:21 pm »
Following the Route of the African Dakar

http://www.bmwmotorrad.co.za/bikes/news/default.asp?Id=1019
Check the link for the pics



A Spanish BMW rider has won the ‘Africa Race’ rally on a G 450 X sport enduro.

José Manuel Pellicer battled through Morocco, Mauritania and Senegal on a modified 450cc BMW to win the race that closely followed the old Dakar Rally route across approximately 7500 kilometres of north African terrain.

Although security fears led to the cancellation of last year’s Dakar Rally and its subsequent transfer to South America for 2009, a number of rally riders and drivers ignored potential terrorist threats and braved the Saharan Desert to participate in this ‘Africa Race’ rally, organised by former BMW Dakar Rally champion Hubert Auriol.


Spanish rider José Manuel Pellicer was one of those who opted for the Africa Race, which started in Marseille on 28 December and finished on 11 January in Senegal. The rider from Benicarló in the Castellón province managed to cross the finish line with his BMW in first place in ten out of 12 stages of this competition.

Furthermore, he not only has managed to dominate the race from beginning to end, but he was also the fastest participant on many of the stages, beating even the best times of some of the car drivers! Despite the toughness of the opening trails, as well as having to lead the navigation though the African wilderness, José Manuel Pellicer’s professionalism and outstanding riding ability shone through, as did the flawless performance of his BMW G 450 X.

His excellent result was the first time that a 450cc motorcycle has won a rally raid in Africa, and what’s even more remarkable is that his G 450 X BMW didn’t even need a single part replacing throughout the rally’s duration. All that was required was an oil change and filter cleaning. We had brought a spare engine with us and had planned to change it during the rest day, which is something that is usually done in these kind of raids,” said José Manuel.

“But when we realised that the one we were using was in perfect condition, we decided to continue with the same engine until the end of the race.” For BMW this achievement signals the first victory in a raid since 2000, when BMW Motorrad Motorsport won the Dakar Rally with Richard Sainct the victor and Óscar Gallardo finishing in second position on the factory F 650 RR.


In 2001 BMW also took part in this competition with the twin GS – where the late great John Deacon finished in sixth place on the R 900 RR and Andrea Meyer won the ‘Ladies Cup’ on an F 650 RR – but between then and Pellicer’s recent African success, no other BMW has won a raid.

“I have so many interesting stories from this Africa Race,” said José Manuel Pellicer. “For instance, the BMW motorcycle I was riding was so fast that once I arrived at the end of the stage before anybody had even set the finish line up! I was timed from the helicopter and I had to wait on my own in the desert for one hour before anybody arrived!” José Manuel Pellicer managed to win nearly all the stages of the rally, with just two exceptions.

One involved a harmless crash; the other – which took place during the final stage, near the Lac Rose – saw him stop to help French rider Olivier Le Cocq, who’d had a severe accident. BMW Motorrad Spain was understandably delighted with José Manuel’s results in this Africa Race, especially after having provided him with sponsorship and technical assistance in preparation for this rally raid.

The race closely followed the old Dakar Rally route through  Morocco, Mauritania and Senegal

With very little time to prepare a G 450 X for the rally, BMW Motorrad Spain pulled out all the stops to help prepare the bike for the competition. Fortunately, it only needed a few modifications, such as front and rear fuel tanks, a support platform for the navigation devices, a rubber device in the rear wheel to soften the acceleration, a modified exhaust system, and Öhlins suspension.

The finished bike, which remained close to the series production model, took a delighted José Manuel Pellicer to the victory: “I was very surprised by the capability of the BMW G 450 X and I’m sure this motorcycle will leave a legacy,” he said.
« Last Edit: January 28, 2009, 09:17:19 pm by Aquatic »
The conundrum that is life...
You have to be absolutely smashed to have the guts to attempt it,
But perfectly sober to achieve any success!
 

Offline Panne

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Re: a BMW G450X wins the Africa Rally
« Reply #1 on: January 28, 2009, 10:38:58 pm »
Well done to Pellicer and BMW Spain.  :thumleft:

The phrase "flawless performance" is a little bit strong though. His bike broke down on the last day and he had to be towed to the finish line at Lac Rose (http://www.rally-live.com/en/headlines/news/detail/090112131118.shtml)

Good performance nonetheless.
"Daar is honde wat maar net hoef te knor. Dit is dié wat reeds tevore gewys het dat hulle kan byt." - C.J. Langenhoven
 

Offline Buller

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Re: a BMW G450X wins the Africa Rally
« Reply #2 on: January 29, 2009, 07:46:24 am »
Good news for BMW!
I only saw bits and pieces of that rally on ESPN, but it looked good - very much like the previous Dakars.
 

Offline Stev0

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Re: a BMW G450X wins the Africa Rally
« Reply #3 on: January 29, 2009, 09:42:56 am »
The WR450 Riders all had food poisoning from an unknown source!
 

Offline tok-tokkie

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Re: a BMW G450X wins the Africa Rally
« Reply #4 on: January 29, 2009, 10:41:35 am »
There were a few on the 'Dakar' in Argentina/Chile - how did they do?  Were the riders on them expected to do better or worse than they actually did?

I looked at the entry list and was surprised how many Yamaha 450s there were.
 

Offline Stev0

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Re: a BMW G450X wins the Africa Rally
« Reply #5 on: January 29, 2009, 10:44:16 am »
The Yamaha's has been proven in the dakar.. almost like the KaTooms
 

Offline umshiniwam

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Re: a BMW G450X wins the Africa Rally
« Reply #6 on: January 30, 2009, 11:08:41 am »
A great result for BMW. I didn't know that ESPN was broadcasting this event :(


His excellent result was the first time that a 450cc motorcycle has won a rally raid in Africa, and what’s even more remarkable is that his G 450 X BMW didn’t even need a single part replacing throughout the rally’s duration. All that was required was an oil change and filter cleaning. We had brought a spare engine with us and had planned to change it during the rest day, which is something that is usually done in these kind of raids,” said José Manuel.


Says qute a bit for the new engine built by Kymco.

Cheers
 

Offline Stev0

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Re: a BMW G450X wins the Africa Rally
« Reply #7 on: January 30, 2009, 11:11:14 am »
makes me want to buy a scooter!