I am somebody that is nowhere close to knowing the in's and out's of Robby's Dakar dream. I am just a long time Planet member. There is many on this site that do not know the history/heartbreaks, so here is what i know:
I hope there is someone that can correct/confirm these statements:
-RG started his Dakar dream driving for VW many years ago ON THE AFRICAN CONTINENT. At least 1 year maybe 2yrs of efforts. He was the first american to win a stage. But something happened and he turned into a parts carrier (not RG's style).
- RG took his Baja experience and thought a 2WD would be very competitive for the AFRICAN DAKAR and started his own USA effort with his own chassis/engine combo.
- Year 1: On the AFRICAN contentment RG was completive but hit some camel grass and was out.
- Came back the next year with a new and improved package for the AFRICAN CONTINENT. Probably BET HIS MOTORSPORT LIFE ON DOING WELL (had a 2nd hummer with a guy that left him high and dry. Some security software guy???) The Event was canceled due to security, I guess it was the correct call but was devastating to RGM. I remember he said he would sign a waiver for his life just to run the event (it was still canceled). Also his support truck got stuck in the middle of the atlantic with a rudder malfunction. FUBAR.
-He then did the wimpy Dakar wannabe series that year in Europe (most likely for sponsor obligations). Did ok, but it was a World Rally Course event at best. BJ baldwin did ok in the 2nd hummer.
-The DAKAR moved to the South American content. Codo's for the ASO except……
- IT WAS NOT WHAT ROBBY MADE THE HUMMERS FOR!!!
- The ASO did the best it could in its first year OFF the African Content. At least it found somewhere else to race.!!! Pretty big achievement. It was a huge task I'm sure. Unfortunately it was not what Robby dreamed his machine would be participating in. Most was a lot of WRC miles. Lots of hard packed roads. But RG managed a podium 3rd place finish.
- Did I miss a year here?
- The next year RG had a hub malfunction and withdrew on a liaison. Very embarrassing.
-So here we are….
- Codos for the ASO returning to a more AFRICAN DAKAR course.
- RGM's Experience brought in a DAKAR champion with Nassar.
- RGM is participating for a win on any stage.
- 1st RGM vehicle winning a stage.
- Looks like a very possible 1-2 finish for RGM (I'm not going to say who will be 1 or 2, the team should be proud no matter what)!!
- No matter what happens the rest of the Dakar, Robby Gordon, you should be proud!!
- Robby Gordon is close to his Dakar Dream.
VERY FAR REACHING: Maybe VW found out early that the 2011 course was going to a traditional African sand route and bailed!!
TOG: Thanks for everything.
- MORE VIDEO!!! ESPECIALLY BEHIND THE SCENES, even united footage. The Planet cannot get enough!!
-A race end video from RG to the planet about the DAKAR experience at the end of the rally (maybe 10 mins worth)? .... I have been waiting for this for year's.
-A Q and A would be even better. Actually, Planet Robby could do a Q and A with Robby. I would pay $25 easy to have a chat with Robby after the DAKAR. I'm sure I'm not the only one!!!!
-RG: I'll Se you in Sonoma next year. I'll be the guy that only wants to talk about DAKAR.
RGM ….. YOU ARE MAKING US PROUD!!!
Very well put KAG3550. I'm with you about more videos and etc.
1 year with vw. Robby rolled end over, I think it was bad suspension set up and turbo lag.
Thank's for the history lesson. So happy I stumbled on this site, it has improved my Dakar 2012 experience. And, I've become a Robby Gordon fan over the past two weeks.