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14 April 2018

Andrey Karginov's, Eduard Nikolaev's, Dmitry Sotnikov's and Anton Shibalov's crews from the KAMAZ-master team in the category of trucks won top four places at the second stage of the 2018 Gold of Kagan rally.

The Big Brother barkhan dune became the first sandy trial for the participants of the Gold of Kagan rally-raid. However, sand packed after snowbreak virtually didn't deliver troubles to the racers. Having arrived first here, at the 130th kilometer of the track, Eduard Nikolaev took a navigation point on the sand slope straight, out of hand, not bothering to search for the best paths. Other KAMAZ crews coped with the sandy obstacle very quickly too. Anton Shibalov noted that, thanks to the torquey engine running on a mixture of diesel fuel and methane, the new gas-diesel truck of the team runs on chaotic Astrakhan dunes at a low speed without problems.

The second largest big sandpit after the Big Brother at the 342km SS was the Africa dunes to which fast steppe roads led. But some sections of the track were laid across hillocks to pass which is not a simple test for trucks, not to speak of smaller racing vehicles. Exactly for such landscapes the Astrakhan tracks are named "killer". It's clear that the team's fans feared how Andrey Karginov would feel in his first competition after last year's spinal injury. Fortunately, highly-experienced Karginov who can adapt to different terrains passed the stage side by side with his teammates. Moreover, he showed the best time in the truck category, after two days of the race he ranks second in the general rankings.

The day wasn't simple for navigators: the steppe yet not spotted with tire marks after winter forced to be more attractive to road book references. It was especially difficult for Evgeny Yakovlev – navigator of Eduard Nikolaev's crew – almost from the very start our conventional truck outran leading Boris Gadasin's jeep and ran first along the route.

As a result, there were mainly trucks and only four cars in Top-10. The best result belongs to Boris Gadasin (04:21:14), Andrey Karginov was second on the finish (+05:57), Eduard Nikolaev was third (+07:07), Dmitry Sotnikov was fourth (+12:54), Anton Shibalov was fifth (+20:44). Then there are Berasuian crews piloted by Aliaksei Vishneuski and Siarhei Viazovich from the MAZ-SPORTavto losing 22:38 minutes and 25:20 minutes, respectively, in the table.

After two days of the race, the crews are in the same order In the general rankings. Today, on Saturday, the final third stage of the Gold of Kagan rally is to start. The racers will have to cover 264 kilometers.