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Chavo Salvatierra dominated the recent Pharaons Rally in Egypt, round three of the FIM Cross Country Rally World Championship. The Bolivian controlled the race pretty much from start to finish aboard his private Speedbrain 450 Rally, taking the win by over 44 minutes ahead of Venezuala´s Nicolas Cardona (Yamaha).
Salvatierra benefitted from the absence of both the KTM and Honda factory teams.
The likeable Santa Cruz resident owned four of the six stages and confirmed he is one of the best rally pilots coming from South America. The reigning over 450cc World Cup champ, who relied on his Speedbrain 450 Rally bike for the event, made things exciting on the penultimate stage, when he damaged his bike in a crash. But the 33-year-old rode convincingly over the finish line to maintain his overall lead.
Salvatierra started the final stage as third rider. He took victory again by almost 20 minutes, making him the unrivalled stage and overall race winner.
Chavo Salvatierra: "It has been a very demanding rally with all sorts of difficulties that characterise a traditional race like the Pharaons. Long stretches of full-throttle with deep dunes inbetween, and plenty of hard and stony sections. I could rely on my bike all the time and was able to collect valuable experience with the difficult navigation. Although I crashed on the penultimate stage after making a mistake, I managed to finish the day with a considerably damaged motorcycle. I am over the moon to take this victory and to fly the Bolivian flag up there on the podium."
Final Overall Results:
The legendary Pharaons Rally, round three of the recent FIM Cross Country Rally World Championship, gets underway this Sunday 18 May in Alexandria. The race ends on 24 May at the pyramids of Giza near Cairo.
The KTM and Honda factory teams have decided to skip the event because of the uncertain security situation.
This puts the limelight on the customer teams. Much of the attention goes to Chavo Salvatierra, the reigning World Cup champ aboard his Speedbrain 450 Rally. The Bolivian, who ended the Rally Dakar this past January in 14th place overall, is eyeing the podium after having finished the race in fourth position two years ago.
Salvatierra is highly popular in his home country, and for good reasons. He won the over 450cc category of the Morocco Rally past fall upon clinching the World Cup title. The friendly athlete from Santa Cruz is promoting himself and the Speedbrain team in a perfect way. Currently he prepares a world class Rallye-Video for his fans. Speedbrain has had the chance for a preview already. Official release will be right after Egypt. Stay tuned on www.speedbrain.de
Following the Pharaons there´s little time to rest for the South American. The traditional Sardinia Rally begins on 7 June, being round four of the world championship series. Salvatierra has already announced that he will be competing in further events aboard his Speedbrain 450 Rally, as the Dakar 2015 is what he and his rivals are ultimately preparing for.
Customer satisfaction meets performance
Bolivian`s national hero Chavo Salvatierra welcomed by Bolivian`s President Evo Morales during this year`s Dakar
Juan Carlos Salvatierra is fully in charge after the first three days of the Pharaons Rally in Egypt. The Bolivian aboard his private used Speedbrain 450 Rally machine has dominated all stages since Tuesday, constantly extending his lead.
"Chavo" controlled Thursday´s third stage from Dakhla to Baharia just as he did earlier during the opening days. The race began on Monday with a short prologue in El Gouna and then the real race took shape towards Luxor and further into Egypt. Salvatierra was never challenged, as he stamped his authority onto Wednesday´s
363 kilometer long special test forming leg two, when the rally led over a terrain often made of sandstone and limestone. The South American powered his German Speedbrain bike over the finish line almost 15 minutes ahead of Nicolas Cardona from Venezuela.
The reigning World Cup champ earlier had started this third round of the recent FIM Cross Country World Championship with a striking performance during the opening day, stealing over eight and a half minutes from Italy´s Stefano Chiusso.
Said the Bolivian: "I´m very happy with how these first days went. It´s hot as expected and so far the route has been changing in terms of character. I wasn´t completely error-free on Tuesday, as we raced some 220 km against the clock towards Luxor. Wednesday was another story and I managed to control the race from the word go. Luckily I was able to back this up today and stay on top of the leaderboard.
"My Speedbrain machine is running like clockwork so nothing to worry in that area. The gap is well over 30 minutes, which sounds like a lot already, but there are two tough days ahead. I have to keep a cool head and stay concentrated."
The Pharaons Rally ends on Saturday at the famous Pyramids of Giza.
It´s the stuff that dreams are made of. To be competing in a world-class rally event in the Arab desert. Many offroaders say they´d love to, but only a few actually pursuit such an endeavour. Michael Ott Eulberg from Augsburg (Germany) is one of them.
The 58-year-old is a lawyer who has been riding offroad motorcycles for some 35 years. Being the former chairman of the Motorsports Club Augsburg, Ott Eulberg regularly had to deal with bikes and the surrounding community. The Bavarian recently took part in the Sealine Cross Country Rally in Qatar, the second round of the FIM Cross Country Rally World Championship. That´s a highly difficult event to do for a rookie, with the heat, the 400 kilometer long stages, and the tricky navigation. Finally Ott Eulberg has checked that box. We talked to him about his motivation and the whole adventure.
Speedbrain: Michael, when and where did your passion for offroad and rallies start?
Ott-Eulberg: Like with many other things in life it´s about those special moments. The Rally Dakar in 1979 really caught my attention as a fan. I was soaking up every info I could get. The bike at that time was the Yamaha XT 500, I had to have one.
Speedbrain: And off you were to your first rally?
Ott-Eulberg: No. I was riding in nearby territory most of the time. But after a while I entered the first continental longer distance events such as the Sestriere in France or the Grand Raid in Italy. In 1995 came the Dubai Rally. I was doing it occassionally as I had a full-time job to do. So this went on until ca. 2007 and a Baja race in Italy. I have basically been a bench-racer since then.
Speedbrain: Should we say you went to Qatar out of the blue?
Ott-Eulberg: Well, I followed the German Speedbrain team for a while and I liked what I saw. It´s like a virus that caught me and I wanted to get back into the action. I don´t have my plate that full anymore
with my job, that´s when I started the planning. It felt like now or never again.
Speedbrain: How much planning is involved before you are there at the rally?
Ott-Eulberg: I was soon looking particularly at the Qatar Rally and began to make a budget. Buying the race bike, the cost for the trip, the service and the entry fee. I did the math and came up with around EUR 40,000. It was obvious that the Speedbrain team would be the best option in terms of both the motorcycle and service.
Speedbrain: Why not choose a traditional brand such as Yamaha or KTM? They offer a full package too.