Nicola Dutto, the first paraplegic pilot who had dared to play the Dakar Rally at the controls of a specially modified KTM, has been disqualified from the race before the start of the fifth stage that today is taking riders from Moquegua to Arequipa.
The Italian driver had arrived at this Dakar after years of preparation, trusting three Spanish backpackers who have not separated from him since the race started in Lima on January 7. Yesterday, during the marathon stage that joined Arequipa with Moquegua, one of Dutto’s backpackers, the Aragonese Víctor Rivera , was forced to abandon the race when he put dust on the engine of his KTM after being stuck on a sandbank.
Despite the efforts of the four pilots to start Victor’s motorcycle -responsible for the navigation of the group-, the KTM of the Spanish did not work again , so that both Dutto and his other two backpackers, Pablo Toral and Julián Villarubia, They decided to keep going leaving Victor behind.
As they advanced through the special stage, the Villarubia bike also began to show symptoms of a possible mechanical problem due to the aspiration of the ‘fes fes’, the suspended dust that sometimes seems to float above the dunes. Although Toral’s motorcycle still worked well, Dutto needed at least the company of two backpackers to be able to lift his motorcycle in case of a fall and guarantee his safety until his arrival at the finish line.
Finally, after crossing a junction, they asked a commissar the possibility of traveling by road to CP3 and from there to leave for Moquegua aware that they would receive a penalty. The commissioner confirmed that they could choose this option that would have allowed them to arrive at the bivouac and have continued the race the next day with a time penalty, but then discovered that this was not true, and after arriving at the bivouac the organization of the Dakar informed them his expulsion with immediate character.
From left to right: Rivera, Toral, Dutto and Villarubia
This is how Nicola Dutto described it in a video shared on Facebook: “During the special stage of 400 kilometers, at kilometer 78 Victor’s motorcycle had a problem, it took us about two and a half hours to repair it, but then it stopped. again. So we decided to go on without him, even though the bike Julian was also having problems. we hope to make us verification neutralization, and then I played a wild card, because as permitted by regulation could go by road a penalty to get to the bivouac and leave the next day.I could not risk my life and that of my companions following with a single backpacker. We contacted the race direction twice, following his instructions, but when we arrived at the bivouac the race director inexplicably excluded us, “ laments the Italian.
In the video, which he subsequently removed from his Facebook account at the request of KTM, Dutto wonders if ” maybe they expected me to do just one stage and go home by my own will . It’s really hard to accept this decision”, and he assures that he will never return to the Dakar after having lived this experience.
Pablo Toral , Dutto’s only backpacker who did not suffer problems on his bike during the fourth stage, has also been very critical of this decision taken by the organization of the Dakar: “Yesterday we had problems on the bikes caused by the fes fes [powder] and the bike Victor broke and Julian was damaged. at one point a road junction with the special, says a commissioner of ASO that we could go by road to the CP3 and from there to goal.Incredulous we ask that assures it and makes a call to some high position and they confirm to him that yes, that we can do it by asphalt “.
“We decided to take this option to try to save the bike Julian and to follow the race all three , “ narrates the alicantino, ” but upon entering the bivouac stage tell us we’re out of the race. We explain that it is not possible, They told us that we could come by the road going through CP3 and they tell us that this is impossible “.Read also: “This is a house of whores, here there is a lot of money and the one who pays sends”
Both Dutto and all his team had a brief meeting with Etienne Lavigne , the director of the Dakar, to clarify all this situation, but there was no luck: “We talked to Lavigne himself and after calling one and the other (making paripé and caritas ) they tell us that they are sorry but that the decision has been made and that we are out of the race “.
“WE ARE OUT OF CAREER BECAUSE THIS CARADING DOES NOT WANT A PARAPLEJICO TO CONTINUE TO END STAGES OF THE HARDEST CAREER IN THE WORLD “, shouts through the social networks Pablo Toral. “I have a lot of helplessness and tears are coming to me right now, GIVE THANKS TO ALL OF THEM FOR YOUR MOTIVES AND FOR ALL THAT WE HAVE ENCOURAGED THESE DAYS We must stay with what we have achieved and knowing that we could have gone further” .