The victory of Ales Loprais was officially confirmed upon the handling of the protest raised by the Kamaz Team against the time penalty handed to Kabirov. The afternoon ceremony in Krasnaya Polyana concluded the tough event.
The one-hour penalty was given to crew No. 305, Kabirov, Mokeev, Tanin for speeding after leaving the bivouac in Stavropol. The speed is generally checked on the GPS device upon entry of the vehicle to the next bivouac. The infringement was evident enough not to be ignored. Moreover, the whole incident had peculiar circumstances in Stage 6. Ales Loprais lost some time in the stage when repairing the central inflation system. Kabirov entered the stage with a comfortable lead of 52 minutes and he could therefore afford not to hurry too much during the stage. Even being the leading truck, he stopped to help his fellow countryman, Mironenko, to free the BMW from the ravine, although the task could have been done by any of Kabirov's teammates. At the finish, he was losing 16 minutes to junior Mardeev. The same 16 minutes as was the gap to Ales Loprais after the penalty. He was not aware of the fact that the speeding incident had been recorded.
"Although it is a bit strange that after 6 days of hard battles in the desert the race is decided this way, we are glad for the victory. The overall result is a result of not only times reached in the specials but also by fulfillment of all safety and sporting rules. The new truck showed its potential and we know how to resume its further development. We spend a long time building it under the direction of Milan Holan, its constructor, and launched it a short time ago. We were here to race with the others but mainly to test the new vehicle and it proved its qualities. Thanks to everyone for their support, another hard work will guide us to the Dakar 2012 in South America, which we are certainly looking forward to. It is great to play an even role in the race with a factory team," Ales Loprais said.
It is Ales' third podium placement in a big international competition. He was 3rd at his Dakar debut in 2007. In 2008 he finished 3rd at Central Europe Rally and a year later he was 3rd at the Silk Way Rally. Last year he finished Silk Way Rally 4th.
The second team's crew of Tomas Vratny and Bonver Dakar Team concluded the rally 19th at its debut and got a taste how hard the real racing is, Tatra No. 319 managed to finish the race and therefore fulfill its main goal.