Dakar, Africa Eco experience a boon to Continental’s tyre development

Team KAMAZ-Master driving to a Dakar victory on Continental tyres

Last month the KAMAZ-Master rally team not only secured a one-two win in the truck category at the Dakar Rally 2017, it was also victorious in the truck section of the Africa Eco Race. Tyre maker Continental states that these two rallies “marked the beginning of a product cooperation” between it and the Russian KAMAZ-Master team. As part of this cooperation, Continental tyres were fitted on the KAMAZ-Master race trucks and all support trucks.

While Eduard Nikolaev and his crew finished the final stage of the Dakar Rally 2017 with a 19 minute advantage, another KAMAZ-master team led by Dmitry Sotnikov took second place.

Nikolaev gave credit to the German tyre maker: “We didn’t experience any tyre problems during the race. It were the tyres that led us to victory after the first week of the race. The second half of the Dakar was the turning point that virtually determined our teams’ first and second places in the general ranking in the truck category. Thanks to the great performance of the Continental tyres, we didn’t lose time on tyre change like our rivals did.”

The Africa Eco Race 2017 saw Andrey Karginov’s crew take victory in the truck category, while Sergey Kuprianov’s team came fourth.

“We are glad that our tyres helped KAMAZ-Master achieve the much-deserved victories,” said Jaron Wiedmaier, general director of Continental Tires Russia. “The results of their racing teams are impressive and we are proud to see that our tyres withstood the extreme driving conditions. They proved their special features: resistance to damage and maximum off-road performance. We will now use the data which we obtained during the races to integrate these new insights into further tyre development at Continental.”

The KAMAZ-Master rally team was founded in 1988 and is the truck manufacturer’s only team to achieve success at an international level. Drivers from the team have taken part in the Dakar Rally since 1990, and this year’s victory was the team’s fourteenth. KAMAZ-Master is also a three-time winner of the World Off-Road Rally Cup and four-time winner of the Silk Way Rally.

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