Friends Dakariani, We forgive the off topic (off topic), but when Federico Fantini sent us photos of his Honda Dominator and allowed us to interview the great Beppe Gauri, We thought even if not strictly pertaining to the Paris Dakar, This topic would have tickled the fancy of many of you.
Meanwhile Hello Beppe by all readers of the site, would you like to explain to our friends what was Camel Honda Bike Marathon?
Camel Marathon Bike is born in Italy from my idea shared with the press officer of the Camel Italy Francesco Rapisarda. Having made the Dakar and the Camel Trophy the idea was simple: Why not take a Camel Trophy with the bikes? Presented the project to the Camel Italy and approved by the name Camel Marathon Bike, not being able to use Camel Trophy. Find technical support from Honda Italy with Carlo Fiorani.
How many editions were carried out and where?
Using the same methodology of the Camel Trophy, recruiting through business curriculum and real selections with guide, orientation, natural, Group-task ...
The first edition of ' 87 was the winning crew including trial and there was Livio Suppo went to California and made a stretch of Baja.
The second annual ' 88 instead was a real mass mailing with special stages and final ranking with winners; was held in Zaire where they attended two Italian and two Spanish crews. The third annual ' 89 was made in Peru always with Italian and Spanish participants.
At the time, what was your role?
The project had it under my responsibility, Choose the country, do the scouting, organize the evidence and during the event do lead the way, Technical Director of the event coordinating staff who followed the convoy.
For those few who don't know you, do you mean what is your experience of offroad, How many Dakar you participated?
I was one of the first to make African rallies were unknown, I started in 82 with the first Rally of the Pharaohs, because the Dakar pr me was unapproachable due to economic problems. The only home gave me a hand was a Fantic 125 RSX standard!
I did 65 African rally in motion, is a record not yet beaten, Although personally the records are not of interest to me, including 10 Paris- Dakar, Rallye des Pharaons, Atlas rally, Rally of Tunisia, Incas Rally, Rally of Iceland, Djerba 500… I've spent my whole life off-road, also integrated with 4 wheels having participated in the Camel Trophy in 85 with the Landrover and then in the international staff that built then the Camel Trophy. Alternative extreme motorcycle races with shipments of Camel Trophy. Total breathless adventure!
Motorcycles in what they differed from the model of series?
The bikes were prepared from Honda Italy and did not have a specific preparation,except for engine and suspension,including coloring and technical tire off- Road, were lighter bikes, Agile and with a nice engine, ideal for the type of event, Besides Honda had interest to push bikes.
Any driver who has distinguished himself in CMBH went on to success in rally raid competitions?
No pilot who took part in the rally raid Marathon Camel Bike continued.
How come you are no longer running this competition?
Camel Marathon Bike has been so successful, and the project was to involve more countries and France was entering when Camel International suddenly felt that the success of the event was to challenge the Camel Trophy and then was frozen! Madness!
Those memories with more affection and some curious anecdote?
A fact that I remember with particular satisfaction was made in Peru, during the reconnaissance, in motion I was by myself and I arrived in a village Choquecancha where time had stopped, There was no light, water, the peasants lived in houses of stone and mud with thatched roofs. Talking to them I learned they had the need for a "special" to try to get the water to the village through a channel made of stone that came from the mountain. I made a promise to find him I went to Lima to recover it and took it to the Mayor of the village.
On my way back with the event, the country had the water , I had an amazing party with singing and dancing and they dedicated their football pitch "Estadio Beppe Gauri", I keep still the original document issued officially by the Mayor!
Many thanks Beppe Gauri for the interview and Federico Fantini of FOX Italy, that has made available the photos of the Honda Dominator Camel Marathon Bike.