Originally Posted by DesertSurfer
Just my humble opinion... But if you are racing against Peterhansel, Nassar and Sainz like Robby does every year...If your goal is to win... You've got to run pretty much balls out every stage. The margins are just so critical. And having a great Navigator can also make the difference. But Peterhansel pushes the pace so hard and is a rally craftsman.
The moto Rally is totally different with and without Coma for Despres and the rest of the field. Despres is a much more desperate rider against Coma's constant attacking.
Now that Robby has the car reliability down, he can focus on strategies for next year.
I think there is another interesting element involved in the mix. The car is reliable and Robby demonstrates he has the driving skills. Robby and Nassar both knew ahead of time that they would need to drive very, very, fast to beat Peterhansel. Robby said as much in interviews. Robby and Nassar have also demonstrated the result of balls out driving in a 14 day race. Nobody can race at the bloody edge for 40 hours over 14 days without making a critical mistake along the way.
Robby made a comment towards the end of the rally that put some light on the other element. That is the superior speed the 4X, short-travel suspended Minis have in the twisty dirt road sections that make up so much of the course. If you watch Robby push the Hummer through those sections it looks slow and inefficient. That big travel suspension is bouncing, bobbing, and leaning like a low rider with a short in the control panel.
That means he has to compensate by pushing it and take more chances in the dunes where the Hummer excels.
(edit, video added) Not the best videography but latter part of this clip demonstrates what I'm talking about.
Now if there was a way to incorporate some kind of Skyhook-like active suspension into a buggy concept, that might tip the scales. A suspension that is firm on the roads but soft and long travel in the dunes and able to absorb big hits would allow it to adapt to the wide range of conditions during the race. I don't know if the technology is there yet, or even the rules allow it, but it would even things up some between the two types of cars.