MECH IRDANE-MECH IRDANE
We have reached the midpoint of the Rallye and a pivotal leg linking the province of Errachidia and that of Zagora.
The leg begins with fifty-odd kilometres of road before getting to the heart of the matter: Aguelmouss, a large plateau stretching proudly across the middle of another, wider plateau. If visibility is good, navigation could be considered straightforward. But be careful because, for once, excellent visibility does not necessarily make things easier. There are too many features on the map to be readily identified. Too many juxtaposed features that change colour, and therefore perception, with every kilometre driven.
In addition, the slopes of Aguelmouss will need to be analyzed with care because the slightest mistake could cost many kilometres before reaching a “pass that passes”.
After reaching CP7 at last, one final CP and set course for the bivouac. But don’t get too excited: this is sure to be the choice stretch of the day. Known as “Gazelle Hell” by the Organization, the map of this area is unclear and of questionable precision… The Gazelles will have to show impeccable navigation skills to reach the bivouac without accumulating too many penalty kilometres.
Nothing is ever easy at the Rallye Aïcha des Gazelles du Maroc.
And tomorrow is the great migration… go west, one and all!
The last three teams to reach the bivouac are on the finish line: 144 (Laurene VOILLEQUIN / Laure AVELINE - Adhome Services), 143 (Leila MASSON / Monica OBERLE - Programme Alimentaire Mondial) and 166 (Stephanie PIERI-CHESNAIS / Isabelle AVIS - TRANSAVIA). They still need to hand in their road sheet and tracking devices... But a glass of Tsarine champagne is waiting for them!
The stretch from the dunes to the bivouac offers easy navigation and driving. There are even several trails leading to the bivouac.
That’s how Team 178 (Marie GUARINO / Giliane STORRER - MERSE-TRANSAC) described their feelings at the finish line, in front of the Ranking office. "We’re happy it’s over but it’s really strange to say that this is the last time we’ll be handing in our road sheet. We’re proud to have found every checkpoint of the Rallye. At first we didn’t think we could do it, but we got into it because we’re pretty competitive."
We're starting to have a good idea of who will be on the podium but aren't saying anything... we'll let you make your own predictions!
...and honking horns: it feels like the end of the Rallye! Many teams have crossed the finish line before a crowd of photographers and cameramen. Tears, laughter, emotions, arms waving triumphantly... they are all proud of what they have accomplished. Just making it to the finish line is a exploit in itself.