After 14 days of competition and 13 stages, the Foj Motorsport Cooper Tires team achieved an impressive second place in the T3.1 category in what has turned out to be one of the toughest Dakar Rallies ever. More than 400 vehicles took part in the race, but only 53% made it to the end.
This is the 12th consecutive time on the podium for Foj, this time at the wheel of a Toyota Hilux. It was a Dakar full of mechanical problems, fesh-fesh and strenuous work on the track. Foj and his co-pilot, Nacho Santamaría, had to work harder than ever to overcome all the adversities.
Foj commented: “It has been a tough race from start to finish, we had virtually all the mishaps we could possibly have; we’ve seen ourselves out of the race many times, but with courage and hard work we have been able to overcome obstacles and be on the podium in Buenos Aires.
“Our Cooper S/T Maxx tyres have been crucial, especially during the fourth stage. After a series of mechanical problems, we noticed that the compressor was not working properly, so we could no longer inflate the tyres we had previously deflated to 0.8 bar. Fortunately, our Cooper S/T Maxx tyres were able to make possible what would have been impossible with other tyres and allowed us to finish the race.”
Marketing Communications Manager for Cooper Tire Europe, Sarah McRoberts, said: “We’d like to congratulate Xavi Foj, Nacho Santamaría and the entire Foj Motorsport team for this well-deserved second place. It has been a really challenging race with lots of difficulties along the way, but their hard work and determination has taken them to the podium again and we are extremely proud to have contributed to their success.
“This second place is certainly a fantastic way for Xavi to celebrate his 25th Dakar entry.”
Next year, the Dakar Rally will take place in South America again, though the route is still to be confirmed. Argentina and Bolivia will most likely continue to host part of the itinerary, but driving through Chile is still in doubt. Meanwhile, Ecuador, Colombia and Brazil have expressed an interest to host some of the stages.
For more information: www.coopertire.co.uk