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Back in Argentina to Conquer the Chaco on The Second Special Stage!

For the second day in a row the burning sun did little help to make the stage more beautiful. Instead it turned out to be the worst opponent besides the incredible dust. In these extreme conditions technical finesse is not the only asset the Dakar competitors can count on. Being patient and setting the strategy with a cool head are invaluable at this point. It is in this atmosphere the Toyota teams have to be able to totally depend on their vehicles. When it comes to the heat, thanks to their extensive heat resistance testing, Toyota should be ready for this year’s Dakar test.

Fast dusty and muddy track

While the track was very fast today, it was on a road carpeted in dust and mud. Many of the vehicles came back to the bivouac in need of a thorough clean. Even the engines had a thick coat of muck. While this can lead to problems with the engine over-heating, the Toyota teams made it without any big problems. The stage invited the drivers to race at almost 200 km/h for the majority. With a lot of people and animals aside the track, there was a lot to see, but it also meant that utmost concentration was required. TOYOTA GAZOO RACING South Africa (TGRSA) did not face big problems today as they did yesterday. The stage in general was quite straight, and the cars performed very well. Team Land Cruiser (TLC) driver Akira Miura #332 finished in 2nd place in the production category. He also managed to help others who were facing problems with the deep muddy holes in the track. A few of the other Toyota teams who were stuck were helped by Miura who pulled out their cars. “It works the other way around too,” Akira said. “It’s always Toyotas helping each other.” 

Awaiting the competitors tomorrow: leaving San Miguel de Tucumán for the special stage towards San Salvador de Jujuy to start a completely new chapter of the Dakar. The rise in temperature will accompany a drastic change of altitude and scenery as the team climb from 1800m to over an incredible 5000m. With the first off-road sections, the drivers and crew will head straight to the business at hand. The first real test in terms of endurance will also call for vigilance and lucidity when crossing the “Rios.” For Toyota facing the heat yesterday and today was only the beginning. 

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