| 2017 | Africa Race

Stage 7: Tiwilit – Tiwilit

Liaison: 16 km – Special stage: 414 km – Liaison: 10 km – Total: 440 km

The special stage of the day was a loop Tiwilit – Tiwilit, a great sand special stage in Mauritania that Thierry Magnaldi and Francois Borsotto managed well and finished second only 10 seconds behind Vasilyev.

The beginning of the special stage was quite easy for the first 50 km on a track before arriving to a well that marked the change of direction and soil as competitors arrived in front of an ocean of dunes without any alternative of getting away without crossing them by a sinuous track prior to difficult dunes 3,5 km ahead. Then, the plain offered some rest before another dune crossing passage with camel herb… The last 150 km took place in the lower land of Benichab.

“The special stage of 414 km was mainly dune crossing, explains Thierry Magnaldi. We rolled well, without getting stuck in the sand with the 2WD buggy and the sand was a total pleasure…Unfortunately we had a problem with one of the deflating pipes on the back tire and we had to stop. Then, Vasilyev caught us and he “stood” there, and we were opening the road in front of a them until the rear tire exploded. Then, while we were trying to take Vasilyev, who was ahead again, we made some navigation mistakes. Vasilyev also made some errors, but less than us, because he is 10 seconds ahead…”