Kolomı Losing Wheel in Stage Six

- 10. 1. 2014, Tacuman/Salta, Argentina -

Again, Martin Kolomı, the pilot of the TATRA Buggyra Racing Team has shown his great qualities. He lost the right rear wheel before the end of the timed section on Friday ... Amazingly, he did not hesitate a minute, he stopped, and as quick as a flash he and the brothers Kiliáns picked up the wheel; driving a three-wheeled (!!!) truck they finished the last six kilometres (!!!) of the timed special stage, clocking up a time that would be good enough to finish among the first ten fastest drivers! But what awaited all crew then were a many-hour lasting repair, and a 150-km-long journey to the Finish, so they would not complete the stage in Salta until after the midnight. The crew of the accompanying vehicle witnessed all that had happened and could give that story coverage. It seems that the TATRA Buggyra Racing Team will not win a longed-for podium finish this year, but are deserving attention while creating extraordinary stories and showing heroic performance - even now when the Dakar has just turned its half.

Our journalists' car left Tucaman before the noon after all troubles we had had in the last stage, as all souls who could gave Martin Kolomı's crew their hands to be able to go on before the day off. Again, a peaceful journey was disturbed by unpleasant information from the track: "Martin Kolomı lost a wheel six kilometres before finishing the timed special stage!" However, it was not just one shocking piece of news, now more or less pleasant, or to be exact, admirable, as Martin Kolomı was going on on three wheels: "After we had lost a wheel we had to stop, find the wheel and put in the track. We'd lost a few precious minutes, but me and the bothers Kiláns got an idea to go on on three wheels. That means keeping on pressing gas to load just the rear axle. It was going fine but turned out difficult in turnings, luckily we made it. Finally, we earned a pretty good place among the first ten, but most importantly we're going on!" Martin Kolomı depicted the situation on the track in Stage 6 Finish.

Miroslav Forman was also watching the situation in the journalists' accompanying car: "When the chance arose to watch the repair of the fallen-off wheel I jumped at it. Just the journey itself to the Finish of the timed special stage, mostly in the height of over 3,000 metres above sea level, was great to enjoy. Spectacular scenery, magnificent views of mountains and plateaus were worth! However, to find the damaged vehicle in the deserted mountains was not that easy, but we finally made it, and to be honest, it was a lot to watch. The repair, no matter it was temporary, took several hours and I came to understand that there is no other way but either love or damn the Dakar. As who would be able to spent another night out of many beyond the civilization, working hard, and in conditions of emergency without emotions?! It was amazing to watch all crew working, and to share all feelings of satisfaction and happiness with them as they could go on. What awaited the Tatra 815 Buggyra after the repair was another 150-km-long slog through rough mountain passes and dusty roads in the mountains to get to the Bivouac in Salta."

The Bivouac in Salta where the Dakar Rally participants will spend three days lies in the city. It is very cosy, now associating a short rest, at least. What is now scheduled for us is intensive work on technical stuff, but it gives us a change to sleep enough and to regain strength for next stages in the competition.

For more information search for www.buggyra.com,
(from Argentina Miroslav Forman).

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