CC Overdrive Toyotas hold third, fourth and sixth at mid-point of Sealine Cross-Country Rally

Sealine Cross-Country Rally, Qatar – April 22-26, 2013

FIA World Cup for Cross Country Rallies, round three

For immediate release
Wednesday, April 24th 2013


· Polish rookie Kaczmarksi leads the way in superb third position
· Venezuelan Coffaro and Kazakh Rakhimbayev in fourth and sixth places
· Brazilian Varela crashes out of third overall on opening Sealine selective section
· Qatar’s Abdullah Abdulghani & Bros. Toyota support Overdrive Racing challenge

DOHA (QATAR): Overdrive Racing’s three Toyota Hiluxes held a fine third, fourth and sixth overall after two demanding selective sections of the Sealine Cross-Country Rally, the second round of the 2013 FIA World Cup for Cross-Country Rallies, which finishes in the southern Qatari deserts on Friday afternoon (April 26th).

Poland’s Martin Kaczmarski and Bartlomiej Boba had been the stars of the Belgian team’s challenge over the second day and the second fastest time behind overall leader Jean-Louis Schlesser had catapulted the Toyota duo into third position, despite the Pole incurring a three-minute penalty for a minor speeding violation at the end of day one.

The Venezuelan pairing of Nunzio Coffaro and Daniel Meneses were breathing down their team-mate’s necks in fourth position, a mere 39 seconds behind the Poles in their Toyota, which has support from Venezuelan Tourism, the Ministry of Sport and PDVSA.

Kazakhstan driver Aidyn Rakhimbayev and Russian co-driver Vladimir Demiyanenko are running with Overdrive Racing under the Team Astana banner and they held sixth position at the end of the second day. But that could have been so much better for the relatively inexperienced crew had they not been awarded a 30-minute time penalty for missing a crucial route waypoint on the opening selective section on Tuesday. This dropped the pair from a potential third overall to eighth, although they recovered on day two to hold sixth.

The Brazilian duo of Reinaldo Varela and Gustavo Gugelmin started superbly in the fourth Overdrive car and were lying third overall shortly before they suffered a heavy frontal impact with a treacherous sand dune near the finish of the opening 408km selective section on Tuesday.

Medical staff treated the pair at the scene after the car fell over a sharp dune. Both Varela and Gugelmin suffered compression fractures to their vertebrae and were detained in hospital in Doha for medical treatment.

“It has been a good start for us with the three cars in the top six, but it is obviously a pity about Reinaldo and Gustavo,” said Overdrive team manager Jean-Marc Fortin. “They are in good hands and the medical crew have been great. Martin, Nunzio and Aidyn have put in a solid start and we are looking to consolidate or even improve their positions over the next two stages.”

Overdrive Racing is receiving extensive support from Abdullah Abdulghani & Bros., the sole local distributor of Toyota and Lexus cars, for its challenge for honours in the Sealine Cross-Country Rally.

Tomorrow (Thursday) teams tackle the third 400+ kilometre special stage in as many days. The demanding stage starts 3.93km from the Sealine bivouac, runs for 407.10km and finishes 1.13km from the overnight halt.

Overall positions after SS2:
1. Jean-Louis Schlesser (FRA)/Konstantin Zhiltstov (RUS) Schlesser Original 8hr 48min 35sec
2. Krzysztof Holowczyc (POL)/Andreas Schulz (DEU) Mini All4 Racing 9hr 24min 09sec
3. Martin Kaczmarski (POL)/Bartlomiej Boba (POL) Toyota Hilux 9hr 57min 37sec
4. Nunzio Coffaro (VEN)/Daniel Meneses (VEN) Toyota Hilux 9hr 58min 16sec
5. Miroslav Zapletal (CZE)/Maciej Marton (POL) Hummer H3 Evo 10hr 04min 49sec
6. Aidyn Rakhimbayev (KAZ)/Vladimir Demiyaneko (RUS) Toyota Hilux 10hr 19min 01sec


For further information: contact Jean-Marc Fortin (E-mail: jmf@overdriveracing.be) or Scott Abraham (E-mail: sa@overdriveracing.be), Overdrive S.A., rue de la métallurgie 37, 4530 Villers-le-Bouillet, Belgium, Tel: + 32 475 762 391. www.overdriveracing.be

Date issued: 24/04/2013

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