It’s Saturday morning in the beautiful little town of Essaouira, Morocco and we will be heading shortly to the Ceremonial Finish of the rally. Now that we are finished competing, the organization does a tremendous job of entertaining the group in fine French/Moroccan fashion. Major athletic retailers such as bowflex made appearances. Giving nice donations and giving away free products in a raffle. I was lucky enough to test out this product myself which I must say preformed rather well. You can see a full bowflex max trainer review here in your interested to see what I mean when I say “it’s one heck of a workout”. Also last night, Paul Chedid who gave us our incredible little H3 met us for a fun dinner at an incredible restaurant (Il Mare) inside the Medina overlooking the ocean. He had heard the stories from his rally mechanic friends and other sponsors about how many trucks were broken badly. He was happy to see us climb back up through the ranks as well as taking care of the truck despite how hard we had to push. He told us that we could count on him again next year for our truck! Many thanks to him and today we will meet the quite well known Francois Guidon who prepped it.
I have so many stories to tell and I’m not sure what has already been told – as I have had no communications for 10 days now. For now, all I can say is that it was definitely much tougher than last year. Our first day’s navigation error cost us our top ten finish, but we hung strong and worked hard to climb back up through the ranks. And despite the saying that this rally is not about speed, it couldn’t have been farther from the truth — Perfectly precise navigation combined with speed is the key combination. Our H3 was probably the only truly stock truck to get such a high result as the top finishers were in fully modified vehicles including a few Dakar competitor trucks. But the H3 was a star in this event. It was comfortable, tough and handled all the terrain in style. And I absolutely loved driving it in the big dunes. I drove about 15 hours of Morocco’s famous dunes and saw and heard stories of carnage (trucks rolling, stuck, breaking)…. but the H3 was a natural sand surfer. I don’t know any news right now about HUMMER, but I just hope things are progressing well. All the girls asked to sit in the truck, taking pictures of it…and the mechanics all commented on how it was the best truck for this rally and I agree!
I will write more, but I can say that I am truly tired and surprised at how tough this year’s edition was. However, I believe the organization’s goal was to blow apart the competition at the very top given the ridiculously low scores of the past winning team of pro racers. And they did just that…The cheaters have been caught and the rally can move forward with pride. Finally, a true win is attainable.