Athletes in Abu Dhabi have already completed three days of racing, and although there are only two more to the finish line, they can't relax until the last kilometer, and the longest stage of this race, Thursday, will remind racers of that. The CFMOTO Thunder Racing Team riders have successfully finished day three and are resting up for tomorrow while the mechanics check the quads and replace weared parts, as the last two days have been marathon days with no mechanical assistance possible.
Antanas Kanopkinas, when finished the third speed stage, said that what he misses the most is the top speed of the quad: "This speed section had fewer high dunes and many sections where you could drive at maximum speed. The maximum speed of our ATVs is around 80-90 km/h, which is at least twenty kilometers too little. Motorcycles overtake us on the straights, but then we chase them on more difficult terrain. Of course it's not comforting, it would be good to find a solution to fix this place."
Having reached the finish line, Adomas Gančierius jokingly said that he felt sad, because he made a little miscalculation about the remaining distance and covered the second part of the track slower than he could: "I thought that there would be more kilometers left after refueling, so I drove more economically than I could. Stupid mistake, but never mind. I had a very good day - the track was not difficult, only in a few places the dune suddenly disappeared from under my feet. The sky was overcast, so without the bright sun you can't see the shadows and the terrain - it's good that everything ended well and I'm at the finish line."
The ATVs returned to the bivouac safely, so the mechanics will only have to perform standard service work before the longest speed stage of the race: install new variator belts, change the oil in the differentials and the engine, and check all the most important components of the ATVs. After three days of racing, the tires show no obvious signs of wear.
On Thursday, the athletes will drive more than one hundred kilometers on the road before the start, after which they will have to cover as many as 308 speed stage kilometers. The track will again consist of sand, dunes and dried up lakes. Perhaps the most complicated puzzle may be fuel consumption and tank size, because there are more than 200 kilometers between refuelings, according to the route plan.