Originally Posted by troy safari carpente
fair prospect for the "Dakar rookie" award for 2013 I reckon...
I think what will determine the final outcome for the "Dakar Rookie" will not be outright speed, but the person who brings the complete package to Dakar. Grabbo for sure has outright speed over Fishy, but has minimal experience using the full nav setup, minimal experience in the Dune environment and will lack the advantage of full factory support. Yes, he will be a part of the KTM family at Dakar - but will be a distant cousin. He will be part of a small team working out of the back of a ute.
Dakar is very much about resources that only a major team can provide and this is most evident in the second week.
Fishy has done some of the important work required to finish Dakar. Making the effort to race and experience against the best in 3 key events - Dubai/Qatar and Marocco and finishing in the top 10 in all 3. When the pressure was on in Morocco - he nailed the nav when many others didn't. He will have the support of a "full factory" team - the bike/ the parts/ the team personal/ the chase support/ the team strategic support, the benefit of knowing those in the ASO and FIM organisation - the only thing Fishy has to concentrate on is riding.
He might not get the desired individual outcome if he is called on to do what he is employed for - water boy for Barrada, but that is understood. So subject to this not happening Fishy gets my (unbiased) vote for "Top Rookie"
Fishy will be faster than Pal I believe and here Coma is thinking that as they prepare to start on the same minute in Dubai !!