Updates from 12,000ft......
Well some good news, some bad news, some just news....
Good news - We seem to have gotten accustomed to the altitude. No more headaches and i can stop eating the damn coca leaves, and drinking strange tea.
Bad news - Cars have still not arrived, they are due sometime tonight, so none of the NACAM series competitors have any cars to go to the ceremonial launch. The organizers have pushed the start of the Rally to midday tomorrow, but the NACAM competitors have signed a petition to request Saturday be cancelled all together, and just race on Sunday. To be honest its doubtful that any of the cars will be prepped in time to make the 10:30am parc ferme, which is about 45min drive from the hotel. So a decision will be made later tonight on that.
Just news - the food in the hotel is great, and i am once again the tallest guy in the street.....once Penti and Mike stay inside of course.
We did pace notes today for all the stages as a precaution even though the cancellation of Saturday looks likely. Stages are unreal, probably the best gravel stages i have ever seen in my life. They range from 7km to 18km, and are all super fast, smooth, flowing, sweeping stages, with some tight hairpins, and typically what you would expect in a snaking valley. From the stages we can see snow capped mountains in the distance which gives you an idea of the altitude. We passed lakes, and just about every form of livestock imaginable - donkeys, pigs, cows, sheep, dogs, you name it, and lots of it. You literally come around a corner and plough into a herd of animals and a little kid with a stick walking them. Oh and lots of cliffs....all of a sudden a 300ft drop is a few ft off the roadway....
The stages pass through at least a couple hundred houses. All the houses are these hand built clay brick type, a fairly poor area but they seem anxious for the Rally. You could never achieve this in Trinidad without someone complaining but it seems all the villages have no objection. The service park is in one of the football fields and is in a really convenient location to the stages.
Essentially if the Rally runs as planned:
Stage 1, 2, 3 Service 4, 5, 6 End of Saturday
Stage 7, 8, 9 Service 10, 11, 12 End of Sunday
With Saturday jumping up right now, apparently there is a concern that for the Rally to be sanctioned FIA, it must be over 100km, so in that case some of the Sat stages may move to Sunday. Will be loads of fun considering we are supposed to fly out on Sunday afternoon. Oh well we will see what they decide later. Some much awaited pics are below, sorry no cars to take pictures of as yet.
Just been informed we are heading to the ceremonial start without cars......so gotta run.
will update more later.