Race day is here, well the Super Special or Prologue and a chance for the spectators to have a look at the "runners and riders"
Could be a little interest though, as in an effort to stop riders deliberately posting slow times to get a lower start position they have allowed the top 10 to chose their start positions on day 1
Best not be 11th though, unless you want the honour of starting SS1 first.
I'll nip over to Yas and have a look with Mrs. Too Old and Junior (4 legged variety that is) and cheer on Sam before what could be a defining point in his career.
It's been two years now since he burst onto the rally scene at just 22 with 2 stage and 2 top 10 finishes in the 2011 rally, to be scuppered courtesy of an over cooked engined on day 3.
This was followed by him qualifying for the Loretta's in the States on a borrowed bike which let him down in the finals, an Ozzie Safari with 3 stage wins but a second best bout with a Roo, a 7th on the first stage in Dakar 2012, but 2 stator failures on stage 2 and out.
A 13th in Sardinia last year was an achievement after being dumped with a 75th start position and a Rally where overtaking was at times impossible and a top 10 in Morocco 2012 a reasonable effort after a few bike issues.
Dakar 2013 was hit through injury, but he is now fit and raring to go and hopefully what could be turning out to have been a development project will serve him well for the next 6 days - he needs a bloody break at last
Come race time on the first 2 stages I'll be quiet as I am travelling for work, but hopefully for stage 3 I'll be back real time, although a bit wearily having been in the air for 2 nights out of 3.
Go Sam and Helder and all the Honda Rally team.
More Honda's than KTM's in this ones, will be interesting to see the line up on Thursday!