CFMOTO Thunder Racing Team, the quad team that announced its plans to compete in the 2023 Dakar Rally earlier this year, has overcome yet another challenge on its way to the great adventure. The two riders of the team were preparing to take part in the Rally Andalucía, which was postponed until autumn due to the increased risk of fires. The team then quickly found an alternative, with all their equipment already prepared for the race, they turned towards Rally Albania.
After a long and challenging week, during which they had to endure all the elements of nature and sometimes spend up to fifteen hours on the track, the athletes finally reached the finish line. After the finish, Antanas Kanopkinas said that he had two feelings: "Firstly, I am happy to have finished in second place. I think it is a really good result. And secondly, I'm really sad that the race is over. It was very hard, but I still would need few more days to go before I'm completely exhausted."
Another team member, Adomas Gančierius, punctured a tyre on his quad bike on the last day of the rally, but as he said, it didn't stop him from finishing well and he was very happy about that: "On the last day of the Rally Albania, we had a 56-kilometre long speed section, which was a great reminder that Albania has both rocks and mountains. I punctured my rear wheel on the fifth kilometre, but I didn't stop to change it and drove the rest of the stage at a slower pace, without any navigational errors, and there were certainly a lot who were wandering. I'm very happy to finish the Rally Albania - it's the second time I've been here, and this time I've done the whole route."
Speaking about the Rally Albania, the athletes thanked the organiser who had put a lot of effort into improving the quality of the event and, according to A. Kanopkinas, it was a great improvement over the last year: "The organiser has really done a wonderful job organising the event, the tracks were very well laid out.
Both members of the CFMOTO Thunder Racing Team thanked their team, who had some sleepless nights and some difficult tasks during the rally, but handled them all without any complaints.
"We would also like to thank, of course, all our sponsors and followers, without whom we would certainly not have been able to achieve our goals and fly our team flag so high," said A. Kanopkinas.
For the team, this rally was another step towards their big goal of competing in the Dakar Rally next year. Until then, the athletes have a target of at least thirty days a year of racing, and the Rally Albania added seven more days to that total.