DUNCAN, B.C. — The bike is built, shipped and is hopefully at the customs depot in Lima along with the rest of the Dakar competitors’ vehicles. A thousand little details are being looked after by various people around the globe all cumulating in Canadian Don Hatton starting in the 2013 Dakar Rally on Saturday in Lima, Peru. The event lasts 17 days and covers nearly 10,000 kilometers throughout South America.
“I’m nervous about the race but really excited about being back in the Dakar,” Hatton said in a recent interview. This will be his fifth attempt at the fabled endurance race.
The next big hurdle on the agenda is the day all Dakar racers fear: scrutineering day.
Scrutineering is where the organizers of the Dakar Rally go over everything with the racers. They review documentation, race vehicle, support vehicle (if you have one), the registered members of the team. And if they find something that cannot be fixed by the time scrutineering closes you do not get to compete.
The technical inspectors review the competitor’s vehicle. Does it have the proper lights, navigation equipment, adequate fuel supply, and emergency water carrying capacity? Does it have the proper and authorized decals in the correct places? Are all the movable pieces, certain nuts and bolts, secured by the proper safety wire?
There is a mind boggling myriad of technical inspections any of which if the vehicle fails could cause the organizers to disallow a racer from competing. There are some 18 different inspection stations that the competitor, his documentation and his vehicle must pass through to get final approval. Then they are allowed to get their time card and target time (time they will start on race day) and enter the Parc Ferme (secured parking area for the vehicles).
For more information and photos check out www.rallyraidcanada.com
–From Rally Raid Canada