Following the short seven-kilometre long prologue, which opened the competition at OiLibya Rally du Maroc, Rafał Sonik was the second fastest rider in the quad category. His result could have been slightly better had it not been for… an uninvited guest, a stone, that got on the footrest and blocked access to the rear brake.
‘I don’t know when it happened, but the wheel must have bumped up quite a large stone, that landed on my footrest,’ said Sonik. ‘Had this section had even one, long straight section, I would’ve thrown it out while driving, but the route was very winding. It was a fast and technical special stage. I could’ve stopped, but I’d probably loose about 20 seconds.’
The Polish quad rider, who has already secured his World Cup title, decided to manage without the blocked rear brake, and this allowed him to reach the finish line on the second place, only 23 seconds behind Sebastien Souday (France).
‘Sebastien is a very fast rider, but speed can sometimes be disastrous for him. Our objectives for Morocco are completely different. He, like Mathias Somfai or Bruno da Costa, will want to show off. For me, the priority is to thoroughly and reliably test my quad for Dakar. I’m looking forward to these five days of racing. This is the only opportunity this year to ride on Sahara, so I’ll try to enjoy each and every minute of the special stages as much as I can,’ emphasized Sonik.
There are ten Poles in total competing in the Morocco Rally. Next to the “sole rider” in the quad category, the FIA World Cup leaders did well in T3. Aron Domżała and Szymon Gospodarczyk were the fastest team in their class. ‘Adam Tomiczek had a great first performance,’ noticed Rafał Sonik. ‘This fantastic rider was the best Polish biker, arriving at the 19th place. It’s also worth mentioning Kuba Piątek, who was only 20 seconds slower, who came back to race after the injury he had suffered in the Qatar Rally. We have our young wolves, who, in a couple of years, will knock on the top cross-country riders,’ he summarized.
Results of the prologue:
1. Sebastien Souday (FRA) 5.38
2. Rafał Sonik (POL) + 0.23
3. Matyas Somfai (HUN) + 0.33