‘Satisfaction is huge. The sixth season of competing in the FIM series and the fifth World Cup are behind me. Each new one tastes better and better, and according to my plans, this is the middle point,’ said Rafał Sonik at the finish line of OiLibya Rally. He sealed his fourth trophy in a row by placing second in Morocco. The rally was won by Sebastien Souday from France.
The last special stage was “only” 235 kilometres, and Rafał Sonik went off to the route as the first quad rider of the day. Sebastien Souday had it easier, because he had practically no need to navigate at this sandy special stage. All he needed to do was to follow the traces of his rival. ‘He caught up with me and I didn’t manage to run away. Just like in Qatar, it’s easy to catch up with your rival, but it’s difficult to lose them,’ commented Sonik about the last day of the rally.
Both riders went off on today’s race almost at the same time. The winner of OiLibya Rally had a lot of luck, because a few kilometres earlier he got a flat tyre and lost the roadbook device. If the stage was longer, he would’ve been in bigger trouble. ‘I’m happy that luck was on his side this time, because Sebastien is a great rival, and he has been motivating me to fight until the very last metres for the past couple of years,’ said Sonik.
The World Cup winner has won three previous editions of the Morocco Rally, but he doesn’t regret that he didn’t manage to do so for the fourth time in a row. ‘We learned a lot about the equipment. We tested a new engine, new clutches, and new settings. This is why I’m very happy that we came here to Morocco, because thanks to this, the risk of failures at Dakar will be lower. That was the plan – and we realized it in full. We know what we must work on and how to prepare to the upcoming very difficult competition,’ he emphasized.
At the end of the rally, a very happy quad rider and his team decided to celebrate another very successful World Cup season. ‘I’m taking my entire team and we’re going to the highest dune, which is situated near the finish line. We will leave the vehicles at the foot of the dune, and we will climb up and then celebrate the fifth trophy that we have won together. These dunes are not as beautiful as the ones in the Egyptian part of Sahara or in the United Arab Emirates, but they are charming in their own way,’ concluded Rafał Sonik.
Results of the fifth stage:
1. . Sebastien Souday (FRA) 03:06.05
2. Rafał Sonik (POL) +4.32
3. Bruno da Costa (FRA) + +15.38
1. Sebastien Souday (FRA) 16:26.37
2. Rafał Sonik (POL) +32.20
3. Bruno da Costa (FRA) +1:08.40
World Cup 2016 Classification:
1. Rafał Sonik (POL) 125 points
2. Sebastien Souday (FRA) 56 points
3. Ignacio Casale (CHL) 47 points