After a well-deserved rest day in Urumqi, Team PETRONAS De Rooy IVECO was back on board late Monday. This morning Artur Ardavichus left the bivouac at 7.36 ahead his teammates and drove carefully behind the wheel of his IVECO Powerstar, finishing Stage 9 from Urumqi to Hami in a good position. “Today it was a very hard day – confirmed the pilot – The stage was really tough, with dunes and gravel: to make it to the end it was necessary to drive not too fast but not even too slow. I think otherwise not all the trucks would have arrived at the end of the stage.” The newest driver of the team is still firmly in the 5th place of the overall ranking.
Team leader Gerard De Rooy finished 10th in the special stage: “Unfortunately after two kilometres in the SS we blew a shock absorber, but we tried to go on anyway. In the dunes we were forced to stop to change a tyre and we lost a lot of time because the sand was so soft that it made it very difficult. Tomorrow we will try to make good time on the way to the next dunes,” said De Rooy on board his #302 Powerstar who is now in 14th place of the partial general classification.
It was a very hard stage for the third member of Team PETRONAS De Rooy IVECO too: on board his Trakker, Dutchman Ton Van Genugten – with Marco Alcayna Ferran and Bernard den Kinderen – finished in twelfth position and maintained his eight place in the general. Today he drove carefully and lost time to help De Rooy change the tyre.
Stage 9 results: 1. Airat Mardeev (Kamaz) 4h19m50s, 2. Dmitry Sotnikov (Kamaz) +0m36s, 3. Anton Shibalov (Kamaz) +5m09s, 4. Eduard Nikolaev (Kamaz) +9m25s, 5. Martin Kolomy (Tatra) +11m40s. (selected results): 7. Artur Ardavichus (IVECO) +25m47s, 10. Gerard De Rooy (IVECO) +58m22s, 12. Ton Van Genugten (IVECO) +1h16m11s.
Overall classification:1. Dmitry Sotnikov (Kamaz) 27h50m00s, 2. Anton Shibalov (Kamaz) +14m27s, 3. Airat Mardeev (Kamaz) +26m30s, 4. Martin Kolomy (Tatra) +31m30s, 5. Artur Ardavichus (IVECO) +1h43m59s… (selected results): 8. Ton Van Genugten (IVECO) +7h52m23s, 14. Gerard De Rooy (IVECO) +214h56m39s.