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14 Jun 2017

Belarus’ MAZ-SPORTavto team to partake in 2017 Silk Way Rally

Truck racer Sergei Vyazovich, the leader of the MAZ-SPORTavto teamMINSK, 14 June (BelTA) – The Belarusian MAZ-SPORTavto team will take part in the 2017 Silk Way Rally, BelTA learned from Minsk Automobile Plant (MAZ trademark).

Truck racer Sergei Vyazovich, the leader of the MAZ-SPORTavto team, noted that last year’s edition of the Silk Way Rally was more difficult than Dakar. “The upcoming rally raid will be no less challenging. It will be an endurance test for both the vehicles and the people,” the racer noted.

Belarus will be represented in the rally by three trucks, the ones that participated in Dakar in January 2017. Bearing in mind the difference in climate, the truck cockpits have been equipped with new air conditioners to help the crews survive the blistering heat of the Gobi Desert. The team has prepared tires of two types, for hard terrain and for sand. Pilot Sergei Vyazovich will be joined by navigator Pavel Garanin and mechanic Andrei Zhigulin. The second truck will be driven by experienced pilot Alexander Vasilevsky accompanied by navigator Dmitry Vikhrenko and mechanic Anton Zaporoshchenko. Aleksei Vishnevsky will drive the third truck joined by navigator Maksim Novikov and mechanic Andrei Neverovich.

“We will pursue a more aggressive strategy. During Dakar, the third truck was partially a backup for the other two, while this time it will be running as full participant. All our crews will be competing on an equal footing, trying to place as high as possible,” Sergei Vyazovich explained.

2017 Silk Way Rally will run through Russia, Kazakhstan and China from 7 to 22 July. The racers will travel a total of 9608km, with special sections making up 4089km. The rally will feature mountainous roads, gravel sections, and shifting sands. Some 20 trucks will compete in the race. The MAZ-SPORTavto team is a regular participant of the Silk Way Rally. Last year, all the three Belarusian crews made the top ten.

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