HINO RACE TRUCKS ARRIVE IN LIMA FOR DAKAR RALLY
With the start of the 2013 Dakar Rally in South America less than two weeks away, the safe arrival of the cargo ship Rio Imperial at the Peruvian port of Lima in South America was greeted with much joy and relief by the many teams whose vehicles made the three-week long sea voyage from Le Havre in France across the Atlantic Ocean and through the Panama Canal into the Pacific Ocean.
Among the nearly 700 vehicles on board (including race, assistance, organisation and media vehicles) were the two Hino 500 race trucks of Hino Team Sugawara of Japan. Truck #508 will be driven by the legendary Yoshimasa Sugawara and navigated by Katsumi Hamisa while truck #520 will be crewed by Teruhito Sugawara and Hiroyuki Suguira.
Development of the new Hino 500 Series race truck began in 2012 as a three-year project and Teruhito Sugawara will be aiming to win his and Hino’s fourth consecutive under 10-litre class championship and extend Hino’s record of consecutive race finishes to 22. Yoshimasa Sugawara’s entry extends his record of competing in consecutive Dakar Rallies to a remarkable 31.
The support team includes four technicians who were chosen from Hino dealers throughout Japan. The team will now concentrate on readying the race trucks for official scrutineering on January 2. This will be followed by a festive pre-race Peruvian launch ceremony on January 5 where the public, watched by an expected billion television viewers around the world will be introduced to the 472 competitors and their cars, motorcycles, quad bikes and trucks on a podium set up on the beach in Chorillos.
The rally will start the same day, in the afternoon, with a 13-kilometre opening stage from Lima to Pisco. The more than 8 000-kilometre route will take competitors through Peru, Argentina and Chile before ending with a ceremonial podium ceremony in Santiago on January 20. There are 14 special stages covering some 3 500 kilometres in the case of the trucks (4 100 kilometres for cars, motorcycles and quads) with a rest day in Argentina on January 13.
Jan 5: Before setting off for the rally’s first special stage, the public will discover the 2013 Dakar’s competitors, on a podium set up on the beach in Chorrillos: the presentation will take place from 8am to 1.30pm.