The third day of Rally Albania was really tiring. In addition, a two-day marathon phase began today. After this day, the athletes will not meet the mechanics, so the members of the CFMOTO Factory Racing Team will have to solve technical problems on their own.
The Rally Albania competition is only halfway through, and the ranks of its participants are already becoming thinner. The team from Lithuania - CFMOTO Factory Racing Team, which is racing here, also has losses. Adomas Gančierius, who was injured on the second day after the incident, withdrew from the race.
The third day was not easy either - the Lithuanians had to face the relentless terrain again, and the racing was further complicated by heavy rain in the mountains. The ATV pilot Antanas Kanopkinas was caught by it and did not avoid big navigation mistakes which led him wandering in the mountains for a long time.
Not only that, he had to drive on the track with damaged power steering, which stopped working. However, this is not the biggest problem. After this day, the marathon phase begins. This means that all the racers will be able to do today is simply regain strength, as mechanics will not be able to touch their equipment until tomorrow’s intermediate finish.
“I drove fourth, everything went very well, and then the hail started. And not just a simple one, but with lightning, thunder, heavy rain. Visibility was completely minimal, I was soaked through. Due to it I drove 30 miles on the wrong side of the mountain. It was very difficult to return during the rain. I later found the right path. Then the power steering broke down, and in the mountains driving without power steering through the rain is something you don't want to do. I drove the last 18 kilometers for three hours. At the finish, everyone asked where I was, where I was lost, because I had been driving fifth until then, ”said Antanas Kanopkinas, adding that the wrists suffered the most today.
The crew of Audronė Kanopkinienė and Darius Biesevičius, competing in the SSV class, started the day without any serious problems or mistakes. However, in the second part, the duo failed to avoid mistakes that cost several minutes, and in the end, in the last 100 km, the duo had the biggest technical problems.
“The first speed section went very smoothly. Both Darius and I made no mistakes. In the second part, about halfway through, we made a mistake, losing about fifteen minutes. When we returned to the track, it started to rain. Conditions became difficult, the road became slippery. We were unable to keep the pace at maximum. We finished the second section more slowly but safely. Well, in the third part, the problems have already begun.
"In the third part we started really well, we rode together with other buggies, we overtook them without major mistakes. But later we slipped off the track in one meadow and punctured two wheels. When we changed the wheels, it started to rain and became very slippery. The speed dropped to just fifteen kilometers an hour. Then my Trip Master system broke down - it started showing nonsense. After that, our communication equipment broke down, so we had to keep driving with gestures. And that's not all - the so-called "rolls on goggles" to keep them clean ended. I handed Darius my glasses so he could see the road for a while. Well, maybe 15 km before the finish, in front of us, the participants' car fell down a ridge about 30 meters . It was a bit of a shock, but we did end the day safely, "said Audronė Kanopkinienė.
After this day, the help of mechanics is not possible, and the participants were given only half an hour to fix the vehicles after the finish. Through it, Audronė Kanopkinienė and Darius Biesevičius arranged the communication equipment, so the next day they will at least have the opportunity to talk in their "office".