DAKAR PREPARATION: MIKKO HIRVONEN’S EXPERT ADVICE
"Learning to drink is the most difficult thing to do"
It sounds ridiculous, doesn't it? According to Mikko Hirvonen, learning to drink is the most important thing when you race a rally like the Dakar. It’s not an easy thing, you have to regularly make a note and think about it.
"Try to sleep and rest whenever you can"
Similarly, sleeping is not easy when you are under stress. It’s much better if you can sleep or snatch extra daytime naps whenever possible.
"Always stay calm when you go into the race"
In the middle of nowhere, so many things can happen. But drivers should remember that it’s not a one day race. Mikko Hirvonen speaks from experience: "If you lose two or three minutes, it's nothing in the desert. If you start to stress about it and try to catch up, you will land yourself in trouble."
"Listen to your co-driver and work together"
The Dakar Rally is also and above all else a human experience. You are not alone on each stage: it’s about teamwork with your co-driver. Mikko recommends communicating together about what you see. "You can both help each other because four eyes are better than two."
"Enjoy this adventure"
Even if it's tough and difficult, it's a really amazing race so have fun. That's the most important piece of advice an expert can give.
Don’t forget to follow Markus' preparation on
To read more driver advice, make a date next month with Christian Lavieille, an expert on the Dakar Rally, an incredible race that he has driven 13 times since 2003.
Photos : ©DPPI