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JMo (& piglet) 02-25-2013 01:54 PM

Tuareg Rally 2013 - Official Event Coverage - follow our ADV riders HERE!
In a little over a week, over 200 riders and drivers will be descending on Tunisia for the 15th edition of the Tuareg Rally - which in recent years has become the premier [non F.I.M. affiliated] desert Rally Raid event for privateer competitors.

Run by a professional and efficient organisation, the combination of varied and challenging stages, simple entry requirements and affordable entry fees, together with a laid-back (if you want it to be) feel, especially around the bivouac - means many competitors return year after year for this ‘season opener’.

Certainly ADV riders looking for their own little piece of ‘Dakar’ would do well to enter the Tuareg - and for many, it is their first taste of competitive rally riding in the Saharan sand.

Particularly popular with UK and European based racers, what is especially notable this year is the large number of ADV rider inmates competing - and not least a large (seven rider) contingent from the USA!

Traditionally the Tuareg has been held in Morocco [together with a final stage in Spain] in March of each year, but for the 2013 edition, the German Organisation have decided to relocate to a new and more varied venue for the race - the North African country of Tunisia.

Perhaps most famous as the barren backdrop of the planet Tatoonie in the original STAR WARS movie, this small sliver of desert between Algeria and Libya with it’s Mediterranean ‘holiday’ coastline and easy access from the European mainland, offers competitors a real taste of the Sahara desert with the large expanse of dunes to the south of the country.

What’s with the waffle Jenny?! - get to the point!!!

OK, so why have I started a[n other] thread about the Tuareg Rally this year??? - the reason is two-fold:

Better coverage
With the F5 crowd in the depths of Dakar 2013 withdrawal and insatiably hungry for information - not least regarding our own ADV inmates competing this year, I thought it would make sense to try and coordinate a far more comprehensive and coordinated media feed from the Tuareg Rally this year. I mean, wouldn’t it be great to get regular updates, photos, even audio interviews/phone-ins here on ADVrider every day?

Sure we can’t expect the [almost] instant feed the F5 hardcore are used to during the Dakar, but I feel we could get a great deal closer compared the coverage this event has received in the past? Of course the Tuareg doesn’t have anything like the media services available to competitors and corespondents that ASO and the like can provide (at a huge cost of course!) - but with the advent of wide-spread wifi and hotel-based bivouacs particularly, things are improving at least...

A face in the crowd
Those of you who know me will be aware that in the past I have worn many hats - some of them fetching, some of them practical, and some of them downright laughable. What I mean by this is that when I’m not messing around with bikes and breaking assorted bones, I earn a modest crust as a freelance journalist and photographer - focusing mainly on off-road and adventure travel... I also have plenty of experience as a rally-raid competitor myself, and not least with the Tuareg Rally which was my first desert race back in 2008.

While I had originally hoped to be on the ADVrider list of competitors this March, the engine for the bike I will be campaigning this season (and for Dakar 2014) in conjunction with Rally Raid UK and Torque Racing (what do you mean you’ve not seen the ‘Dakar Dazed II’ thread yet?!) is not quite ready yet...

Fortunately however, I have still been able to join the Tuareg Rally in an assistance capacity - which puts me in a unique position to report on the event from the heart of the bivouac!

I am therefore delighted to announce that I shall be supporting a number of individual riders this year, together with the whole RMS/IYSK Wine sponsored US team - providing them, and you, with a daily media feed - words, photos, and yes - even audio interviews!

The idea is to offer a real insight into just what it takes to compete in a Desert Rally-Raid event - from both the rider’s perspective, and their assistance crews behind the scenes. I hope to be able to bring you all those tales of joy, share in any sorrows, and in addition offer my own personal perspective on various events as they unfold throughout the rally...

I’ve already packed my cameras, my Lyndon Poskitt Inferno jacket, and just for the F5 crowd will include a Buff bandana! So please settle back, check out the profiles below of my highlighted riders (in a format shamelessly ripped off from, show them your support - and allow Piglet and I to be your Media Monkey’s for the next couple of weeks!

Toot toot!

Jenny xx

JMo (& piglet) 02-25-2013 02:10 PM

Rider #115 John Mitchinson (GBR)

name: John Mitchinson (inmate: ktmmitch)

race number: #115

nationality: British

age: 51

bike: KTM 690 ‘Rally Raid Evo2’

service team: Torque Racing Services

“I love to race in the desert and catch up with old friends”
John founded Rally Raid Products UK in 2009 as an extension of his existing business in high-precision CNC machining and plastic moulding. Concentrating initially on producing rally fairing and long-range fuel tanks for the KTM 690 Enduro, his company now make a wide range of Rally and Adventure products & accessories for an ever expanding range of off-road competition and adventure motorcycles. However, the heart of the business remains the ongoing development of the KTM 690 Enduro which John believes is the ideal platform for a privateer [open class] rally bike.

John has participated in the Tuareg every year since 2005 and it remains one of his favorite events on the calendar: “I love to go back and race in the desert every spring, catch up with old friends, and just enjoy the atmosphere of the whole event... It’s laid back enough so you can take it easy, or you can fight with the front-runners. “I’m also really looking forward to the challenge of a different country this year, and will be racing with our brand new EVO2 rally kit that will form the basis of a Dakar Rally bike for 2014.”


JMo (& piglet) 02-25-2013 02:18 PM

rider #76 Mark Brincat (MTA)

name: Mark Brincat (inmate: Malteser)

race number: #76

nationality: Maltese

age: 36

bike: KTM 690 RR Rallye Replica

service team: Torque Racing Services

“I just love being on my bike”
Mark Brincat is an accomplished adventure bike rider, with a passion for travel and trail-riding across the globe.

His past endeavors include traveling across the outback of Australia through the Simpson Desert and up to the tip of Cape York, and more recently in Europe - traveling through the Aragon Desert in Spain and the Pyrenees.

Mark has also been a regular competitor in UK enduros - including the SEEC Championship, the legendary Dawn to Dusk 12/24 hour rally, and DYFI Enduro in Wales. The 2012 season included a podium position in the British Cross-Country Championship.

“Last year I was offered the rare opportunity to buy a 690 Rally Replica bike which was the bike of my dreams - and as I had always wanted to compete in an African Rallye since I was a child, the first opportunity was the Tuareg Rallye. “After completing many training sessions in Wales I am simply looking to complete the Rallye successfully, for me the Tuareg is all about the passion and adventure, but also meeting great people and making friends along the way.”

JMo (& piglet) 02-25-2013 02:24 PM

rider #332 Ollie Lloyd (GBR)

name: Ollie Lloyd (inmate: Ollie Lloyd)

race number: #332

nationality: British

age: 20

bike: KTM 690

service team: Malle Moto

“Young ambition”
At just 20 years old, UK rider Ollie Lloyd is one of the youngest competitors on the Tuareg Rally this year.

Although this is his first International Rally Raid event as a moto pilot, Ollie is already an experienced navigator and co-driver on four wheels, having regularly competed as a father & son team in 4x4 and Cross-Country Rally cars since he was 11 years old - including events in the UK, Europe and North Africa.

Having started riding [quads] at 6 years old, Ollie completed his first motorcycle enduro aged 15, and has continued to race on two wheels in UK enduros, in addition to co-driving in Hill Rally and Cross-Country Championship events with his father. In 2012 Ollie successfully completed his first UK Rally onboard a KTM 250EXC-F, followed by a top-ten finish in the Hafren Rally piloting his current KTM 690 Rally bike.

Equally impressive is that for his first International event as a rider - in the original spirit of African desert rallye-raid, Ollie has also elected to undertake all his own servicing and maintenance work during the Tuareg Rally.

“For the Tuareg Rally I would be aiming to finish, as it is my first rally raid and I really would like to learn from the experience and get my navigation spot on. “I’ve been involved in motorsport for the last 9 years supporting my Dad through co-driving and navigating and I now have this opportunity to fulfill my own ambitions in Rally Raids.”


JMo (& piglet) 02-25-2013 02:28 PM

rider #87 Tony Schattat (GER)

name: Tony Schattat (inmate: Schattat)

race number: #87

nationality: German / Australian

age: 21

bike: Yamaha WR450F

service team: Malle Moto

“Innovation in the dunes”
As the son of an accomplished desert racer, for his first International rally Tony Schattat joined his father in a two-bike team for the Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge in 2010, at the age of just 18. A graduate in electronic engineering, Tony has spent the past three years developing a range of cockpit navigation devices and in 2011 set up his own production and distribution company RNS (Rallye Navigation Solutions) offering a high quality alternative to the ICO and Cap repeater devices - with many of the top International riders now choosing to use his equipment.

Despite focusing on establishing the business, Tony still finds time to practice his riding and racing technique with regular training sessions in the forests of Germany and neighbouring France.

Not only has Tony completely [re]built his 2010 Rallye bike from the ground up, but he will be undertaking all his own service work ‘Malle Moto’ style for the duration of the Tuarag Rally, together with his regular riding partner Edward Taylor, who is campaigning the only 2-stoke in the Tuareg this year.

“I’m really looking forward to a fun week with over 2000kms in the beautiful deserts of Tunisia with my mates! We will see if I’ve forgotten my dune riding skills or not!”


JMo (& piglet) 02-25-2013 02:36 PM

service team #504 Dave Peckham (USA) - RMS & IYSK Wine

name: Dave Peckham (inmate: GSNorCal)

race number: #504 (Service Team)

nationality: USA

age: 42

bike: wrenching not riding this time, but a Honda CRF450X ex-Dakar rally bike at home!

service team: Rally Management Services / IYSK Wine

"Wide open throttle, or don’t bother!"
To many US-based riders especially, the name Rally Management Services (RMS) is synominous with the Dakar Rally - having supported Jonah Street throughout his Dakar career, together with other [primarily] US-based riders in both the African and South American events.

In 2012, Dave Peckham - who originally joined RMS in 2007 as a Rally School Instructor - took over the company from founder Charlie Rauseo, and has continued to expand the business offering International Rally Service Support, together with their specialist [rally] bike preparation and roadbook & rider training.

Dave himself raced the Rally Dos Sertoes in 2010, and was a mechanic at Dakar 2013. In continuing to provide race and rally assistance to US-based riders, his primary focus is growing the sport of Cross Country Rally in the US through RMS and his new project, Rally Navigator:

Dave says: “As the most experienced US-based Service Assistance team in Dakar (having attended every event since 2004), RMS are the natural choice for North American riders looking for a team to handle the logistics of International events - and for the Tuareg Rally this year, we are supporting seven riders in conjunction with team sponsor ‘If You See Kay’ Wines - who’s motto "Wide open throttle, or don’t bother" exemplifies why they're such a perfect partner for the team!”

He continues: “From a personal point of view, how could I pass up the opportunity to go to Africa with such a close group of friends?! Almost all of us have ridden, raced, and worked together in the past, and not least that seven of us have been to the Dakar - either as a rider or a wrench. It's such an experienced group, that when combined with the close friendships, promises to be a great time!”


JMo (& piglet) 02-25-2013 02:46 PM

rider #317 Jean-Luc Solans (FRA)

name: Jean-Luc Solans (inmate: Jean-Luc)

race number: #317

nationality: French

age: 49

bike: KTM 690E

service team: Rally Management Services / IYSK Wine

"Dakar Dreaming"
French born US resident Jean-Luc Solans is typical of many adventure riders - who having travelled extensively, sees participation in Rally Raid as offering a competitive edge to the kind of riding he enjoys most.

Living on the West Coast of the USA, Jean-Luc has gained plenty of desert riding experience in Nevada, Utah and Baja Mexico. Shorter forays into the Mojave Desert, to Moab UT and the Colorado Rockies have punctuated extended overland trips - including the Pacific Crest Trail from Mexico to Canada, and an epic 6-month journey that started in San Francisco, headed north to Alaska, and ultimately finished in Patagonia, South America.

Having competed in the 4-day "Kings of the West" desert race [Nevada & Utah] in 2011, career commitments with Talend (employer and personal sponsor for the Tuareg Rally) mean extended trips are currently on hold: “I've been dreaming about the Dakar since I was a teenager, but realistically it is too expensive and [logistically] difficult for me at the moment” he says.

“Fortunately the Tuareg Rally is the closest thing, and seems very motorcycle friendly so I could not pass the opportunity to go with a great group of friends.’’ Despite nursing a recent leg injury, Jean-Luc remains optimistic “My only goal is to finish the race and have fun doing it!”


JMo (& piglet) 02-25-2013 02:55 PM

rider #97 Ned Suesse (USA)

name: Ned Suesse (inmate: Neduro)

race number: #97

nationality: USA

age: 35

bike: KTM 505 XCF with Rally Moto kit

service team: Rally Management Services / IYSK Wine

“I love all the elements of rally racing”
Almost everyone on ADVrider will already know Ned ‘Neduro’ Suesse - whether it be for his epic ride reports, his company Double-Take Mirrors, the Dual-sport riding techniques series of DVDs, racing the Baja 1000 on a KTM 950... and not least for the small matter of nailing a text-book campaign during the 2012 edition of the Dakar Rally!

“The last race I did was also the biggest one - the 2012 Dakar. I enjoyed the race immensely, but the year of preparation was hard on everything else in my life” he says. “The Tuareg was an easy decision [In comparison] - I joined the [US] team late, after all the logistics had been worked out, so all I had to do was build a bike and show up!"

Ned’s first visit to North Africa was for the Raid de l'Amitie in Morocco in 2011, which he thoroughly enjoyed, prompting a return to the Dark Continent this year: “I love all the elements of rally racing - obviously riding and navigation, but also travel and meeting new friends and everything else that goes along with it. "My favorite rides are when I get to explore someplace new. Tunisia certainly qualifies! “My goal is just to ride well, stay safe, and navigate precisely. If I do those things, I'll be very happy, no matter where I wind up competitively.”


JMo (& piglet) 02-25-2013 03:00 PM

rider #116 Lukas Matzinger (AUT)

name: Lukas Matzinger (inmate: LukasM)

race number: #116

nationality: Austrian

age: 30

bike: Husaberg FE 570

service team: Malle Moto

"High Roller"
What do you do after you’ve ridden your bike to the highest (and by default coldest ) place on earth? - well, you take it to one of the hottest of course - the Sahara Desert!

Lukas Matzinger is an Extreme Adventure Rider, who in 2012, as part of a three bike/rider team that included fellow ADV inmates (Walter) Colbatch and (Barton Churchill) Beta, smashed the world altitude record for riding a motorcycle - topping out at an Epic 6,361 metres (that’s 20,869 feet) above sea level!

When not adventure riding, Lukas is also an accomplished Supermoto racer, and more recently has been focusing specifically on technical enduro and desert riding - with a view to competing more regularly in off-road competition.

With such a varied and accomplished riding background, Lukas can hardly be described as your average ‘rookie’, however he freely admits that: “This is actually my first [off-road] race, and up until now my only rally experience is watching the Dakar on TV! “Although I’ve never tried it before, I’m hoping to find in Rally racing something that combines some of my main passions in life: Riding motorcycles off road, visiting exotic and remote landscapes and cultures, and exposing myself to new and challenging situations.”


ThomasVolomitz 02-25-2013 05:23 PM

Awesome, subscribed and following.

ecarnell 02-25-2013 05:46 PM


Originally Posted by ThomasVolomitz (Post 20810166)
Awesome, subscribed and following.


Flood 02-26-2013 12:57 AM

Let's make this a sticky, shall we?

ferals5 02-26-2013 01:32 AM


Originally Posted by ThomasVolomitz (Post 20810166)
Awesome, subscribed and following.

yep i'm in :clap

Brodovitch 02-26-2013 01:38 AM

Subscribed and ready Jenny, thanks for the effort!

rallyman1978 02-26-2013 03:32 AM

In and subscribed :clap thanks Jenny :freaky

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