In the meantime, the first of the event summaries for my profiled rider's:
Tuareg Rallye 2013 - #332 Ollie Lloyd - final summary report
“One to watch...”
Participating in his first desert rally on a motorcycle, 20-year old Ollie Lloyd overcame first-day nervousness and inexperience in the treacherously soft Tunisian sand, and progressed steadily through the field to finish the event just one step away from the podium, and well ahead of his nearest rival.
“Right from the beginning I probably had the worst day ever on a bike!” he exclaims “I was totally unprepared for how soft the dunes were here [in Tunisia]. “It took me over seven hours before I was able to leave the stage, whereas many of the other competitors had actually finished in half that time!”
Fortunately for Ollie, who was riding his large capacity (690cc) KTM rally bike, he found the subsequent stages featured terrain far more appropriate and familiar to his riding style - the fast tracks and open going combined with more defined navigation allowed him to make steady progress through the field and leave the nightmare of that first day behind.
“I’d learnt a lot of techniques in the first couple of days” he explains “So when it came to the dune stages in the middle of the rally, I was far more at ease and prepared. “If I did get stuck in the sand, I was able to recover my bike in a couple of minutes, where before it might have taken twenty...” he grins.
As his confidence increased, so too his stage results dramatically improved. He finished the second day as runner-up, followed by a trio of stage wins on days four, five and six - something vary rarely achieved at this level of competition - which helped to propel him into the top ten, with a final result of 4th overall in the Moto Amateur class.
“The rally was a real eye-opener” he concludes “The first day I was exhausted, but still had to service my bike [Ollie had elected to undertake all his own maintenance too, rather than use an assistance team], prepare my road book, eat, sleep... at the time I didn’t know how I was going to manage!”
Fortunately his ability to keep a level head paid dividends throughout the week, while the highs and lows he experienced on the Tuareg Rallye will undoubtably prove beneficial throughout the rest of the 2013 rallye season, and beyond... certainly based on his performance in Tunisia, it should not be too long before we see this young British rider taking his first step onto the podium.
results #332 Ollie Lloyd - class: Moto Amateur
Day 1: 21st
Day 2: 2nd
Day 3: timing suspended
Day 4: 1st
Day 5: 1st
Day 6: 1st
Day 7: 6th
4th Overall (MA)