DAKAR 1992 | A new engine to win

Alessandro De Petri had asked the Yamaha engineers the previous year; "I want a more powerful engine but easy to deliver and a lighter bike". And in Japan they fulfilled it. To the impetuous and fast driver from Bergamo, to the other French Peterhansel, has arrived, for Paris-Le Cap, a new bike with the TDM engine 850 and a low weight of nine kilos for a declared dry total of 180 kg. And the Yamaha YZE also won this edition of the African marathon confirming the maturity reached in the previous “Dakar”.

The previous year the Super Ténéré had won the race with Peterhansel unlocking a kind of curse that weighed on the Yamaha. After winning the first two editions of the African race with Cyril Neveu and the XT midica 500 Thumper, the Japanese company had had to mark the pace for ten long years, in favour of BMW, Honda and Cagiva. The new bike takes up the characteristics of the previous YZE so much so that externally looks pretty much the same as the model 1991.

An injection of power allowed the YZE to remain at the top of the ranking. Improved handling also by decreasing weight. In the test, an easy frame and a rigid fork emerge.

The most striking modifications are a longer saddle wanted by De Petri for greater comfort, (at the same time better protect the compass sensor) and a longer exhaust system with a larger silencer. There is also a different and more voluminous protection plate made of aluminum for the outside and Kevlar for the part near the crankcase and an air intake on the left of the fairing-tank to decrease the temperature around the shock absorber.


But the most consistent novelties are under the large fairing and the voluminous tanks. Let's start with the engine that is practically that of the Yamaha TDM 850. It is even the same as the standard engine in ninety percent of its parts: same crankcases, Pistons, witness, diameter of the ten valves, Crankshaft, dimensions of Mikuni carburetors from 38 mm, in addition to bore and stroke (89,5 x 67,5 mm with a displacement of 849 CC). Still present are the two balancing shafts in front and behind the crankshaft and practically indispensable to reduce the vibrations generated by this parallel twin-cylinder with the crank pins arranged to 3600.

Modified instead the suction box (also different from last year's model) which has two filters placed lower; the intake manifolds that have a practically straight course and carry the carburetors further ahead while the exhaust system is made entirely of very light titanium.

Compared to the '91 bike the most obvious modification concerns a longer and more comfortable saddle, a new Kevlar and light alloy protection for the lower part of the engine as well as an overall lightening.

Different from last year's TDM and YZE, the gear ratio further closer thanks to a slightly shorter fifth gear. The ignition is different from the standard TDM and is made to match even with the low-octane fuels recovered in Africa. The convenience of electric starting always remains, a well-tolerated weight boost, indeed required, by the pilots, to free from the effort of pedal starting.


The dimensions of the frame and suspension are the same although great attention has been paid to trying to concentrate the weights as much as possible towards the center of gravity. In addition to moving the intake chamber and its filters to the sides of the upper beam, the battery migrates from the top of the frame to the rear of the cylinders. Its construction is particular since it is a modular structure divided into many pieces. To adapt to the new location, it forms a U-shaped parallelepiped.

The frame has the same single-beam design and still acts as an oil tank for dry sump lubrication of the engine. Practically the design focuses on the upper beam, made of bent and welded steel sheet, which directly joins the steering can notto to the attachment of the monoshock absorber. Four braces fasten and embrace the engine at the front while at the rear a structure, always in boxed sheet metal supports the engine and swingarm. Two half-cradles, in extruded tubes of light alloy, connect under the motor, the front of the frame to the rear.

A decidedly massive and reassuring frame in the appearance to which the three tanks made of aluminum are fixed; the rear is self-supporting and also supports the fender and the electronic compass sensor. The total capacity of the tanks is decreased by 61,5 in 55 liters thanks to lower engine consumption. For the longer stages, however, an additional four-liter tank has been designed to be mounted on the right of the rear tank. The ignition control unit and the current rectifier are now placed in the front area under the instrumentation, before they were housed under the saddle.

As we have said, even the suspensions remain the same. The fork has been revised in calibration, while the shock absorber, cause of many problems to the previous “Dakar”, has a new expansion tank of greater volume and fully finned to better dispose of heat. The Kayaba fork with upside-down stems from 43 mm in diameter retains an excursion of 300 mm and is widely adjustable both in compression and in extension. Behind it remains the beautiful light alloy swingarm built by bending an aluminum plate and integrating it with casting elements; all to form a differentiated structure according to the points of greatest stress.


For safety the attachment points of the progression connecting rod that had broken on the bike of Cavandoli both at the Dakar and at the Pharaohs of last year have been strengthened properly. The rest of the chassis is still the same as the YZE of the 1991 with two floating disc brakes equipped with double piston calipers and aluminum hubs with double spokes that join the rim from one side to the other. A motorcycle “dakariana” or better to say African, in addition to being powerful and easy to handle, it must also be designed from an aerodynamic point of view in order to offer the lowest possible resistance to air and at the same time make driving more comfortable for the driver.

None of the “top drivers” however, it required greater protection and the shape of the hull remained the same as the old version. Fairing, fairing and fenders are made of carbon fiber mixed with kevlar, to be elastic and resistant at the same time. The abundant instrumentation is collected behind the fairing but the Italian TEAM of BYRD has a different dashboard from the one made in Japan and used by Peterhansel's bike. It is higher to facilitate the consultation of navigation tools and the road-book even in seated driving. The dashboard, newly in composite materials, is built in Italy.

As Cagiva Elefant, even the Yamaha YZE we tested was back from the Pharaohs rally. It is that of “Ciro” De Petri and bears the signs of the always rude treatment of the Bergamo pilot. It is a little ruined in the bodywork for the falls and for being trapped in the quicksand of the second day of the race; he also had the misfortune to see himself change the “heart” (read of course the engine) since “Ciro” has suffered a too close encounter with a stone that broke through the crankcase of the engine with sudden leakage of the indispensable lubricant.

It still remains fascinating even if the “makeup” it's not a great evening. The air thus experienced is a kind of guarantee that this bike is precisely the one that competed in the Pharaohs. This same YZE we will find it only more beautiful, without dents and scratches, at the start of the Paris-Le Cap. The test ground is the same that we used for the Cagiva Elefant. Immediate comparison where similarities such as ease of driving emerge, stability on fast tracks, and powerful and still modular brakes. The Varese bike is superior in engine, in its power delivery, in full-bodied shooting from low revs.

As for the maximum value of the power they are probably very close and only the Yamaha appears more angry, more gritty from medium revs up to maximum engine usage. In terms of performance, Yamaha has therefore significantly brought the Cagiva closer, greatly reducing the power gap that was the biggest difference with the Elefant. The weight distribution also now appears more favorable and the bike has gained in handling. The bulk does not scare too much and the set-up in the saddle allows you to better control the bike. In addition, the new saddle is a real armchair so soft and abundant in size without however being a hindrance in the central area.

Obviously the YZE is not a light two-stroke enduro but it is quite easy to drive thanks to the well-calibrated suspension. Especially the rear one always manages to copy the roughness with rigor while the Kayaba fork is too rigid and transmits part of the stresses to the arms. Of the engine we have mentioned the right delivery and the sensitive power that should be around the 80 horses at a speed higher than 8000 RPM. They are almost ten more than the engine of the TDM from which it strictly derives but they seem many more for the liveliness of the character of this engine. The difference in favor of YZE derives mainly from the possibility of having a practical discharge “free” and the specific calibration of the carburetors, from the completely different filter cassette and a modified ignition.

Technical data

Engine twin-cylinder four-stroke front gear and tilted forward by 45 Degrees.
Distribution chain-controlled twin shaft and five valves per cylinder.
Double countershaft balancing controlled by gears.
Bore x stroke 89,5 x 67,5 mm, piston displacement 849 CC.
Starting electric, digital electronic ignition with electronic advance.
Cooling liquid pump with centrifugal pump controlled by gears.
Two Mikuni vacuum carburetors from 38 mm in diameter.
Lubrication dry sump with the oil contained in the frame.
Clutch multiple disc q & #8217; oil, five-speed gearbox, primary transmission with straight tooth gears.
Cycling: single-beam frame in square section tubes and boxed sheet metal elements.
Motor used as a supporting element.
Fork Kayaba telehydraulics with upside-down stems from 43 mm.
Brakes floating disc in carbon steel from 290 mm front diameter. and 230 mm post.
Pliers floating double piston front. and post.
Tyres Michelin by 90/ 90-21 Ant. and 140/90-18 post. total tank capacity 60 liters.
Weight declared dry 180 kg.
Dimensions in mm: maximum length 2440, wheelbase 1580, seat height 965, maximum width 890.

Source MOTOCICLISMO February


Dakar 1992 | Bad Japanese habits

Text by Nicholas Bertaccini

Stories about the Dakar are never single stories, they are never isolated events, there is always a plot, a domino effect that creates different legends. The Paris-Dakar over the years has had different forms. Even before we get to the latest versions, between South America and the Arabian Peninsula, the routes were different.

In particular, the edition of the 1992 was characterized by the arrival in Le Cap, Cape Town.

It was decided to arrive at Le Cap to avoid potential dangers. Africa has always been a restless continent and in that year the father of the late Sabine decided that the classic route, to the capital of Senegal, did not give guarantees. It was therefore decided to cross Africa, the caravan pushed along a coast to coast North-South. This created many difficulties, also because southern Africa has completely different characteristics, is wooded. Then the pilots found themselves running on trails through the woods, in addition to the classic desert slopes.



That year Beppe Gualini obviously participated as a private individual. But he had an agreement with the team. Belgarda, New to act as a fast support. Beppe had to guarantee the team a first assistance in the field. He therefore had the same bike as that of the team's riders but did not have the same colors, his was yellow with livery Camel.

At the end of the fifteenth stage, Gilles Lalay, pilot Belgarda, stumbles upon an accident, amazing and dramatic. The pilot French in fact loses his life by colliding with an ambulance that proceeded in the opposite direction on a track in the middle of a forest. The clash was terrible. The Belgarda team decided to retire, as a sign of condolence. The team manager, however, told Beppe that he can continue, that can bring the bike to Le Cap and that indeed, it would be a nice tribute to the deceased colleague. In return, the Belgarda leaders tell him, you can keep the bike, once the race is over.




Beppe makes it, driven by his incredible and inexhaustible fortitude arrives at Le Cap. The winner of the race was Peterhansel, right on Yamaha, while Beppe ranked sixteenth, an unthinkable result. Then back to Italy, carrying the bike with you. After some time, Yamaha officials knock on his door and ask him for the bike back.. Beppe replies that he has an agreement with Belgarda and that the bike is his. Unfortunately Belgarda has finished his race, the books are in court and nowhere is it written that the bike is gualini's. The bike is by Yamaha. Beppe reluctantly detaches himself from it. But the worst is yet to come.

After some time a carriage smasher contacts him. And’ back to Beppe from the number door table that was on a bike that had to press. The Japanese, In fact, they used to press all their bikes, all their prototypes. So Beppe just has to admire a cube of yellow Camel sheets that had once been his African companion. A note about this Japanese custom: in the Yamaha museum of IWATA a couple of Peterhansel motorcycles are on display. Looking at the color of the frame of one of the two, however, you can see that the bike is not his but it is a private bike, recognizable by the white frame instead of the canonical blue of the officers, Stéphane's was probably pressed.




Dakar 1992 | Patrick Faure: when even Peterhansel asked me who I was…

It's true, at dakar there are special people. I have known many of them and with great amazement, even among the official pilots. Many, Indeed, everyone I've been dealing with, even for an exchange of jokes, they were all kind, available and not at all superior. Franco Picco didn't hesitate to disassemble my saddle and tanks to find the reason for a small inconvenience. Even when he hit me drunk in Montpellier, him and Edi Orioli they stopped to help me start again with a pat on the shoulder "come on, you can do it" that did more effect than any painkiller. Franco gave me the tools without hesitation... "you pay me at home".

Danny La Porte at Le Cap he made my time at the prologue and we joked up in line for dinner at the first bivouac in Africa. Meoni you didn't even need to look for it, greeted you first him and asked you how it goes. In the past, the "Bogio" Andrea Marinoni he told me "bravo, go easy..." and I "there's no problem, more than that I don't go!!”

But who even made me smile was the great Stèphan Peterhansel. At Le Cap he accompanies me in his camper van "Tullio Provini", with Chicco Piana and their respective ladies. The bike tucked half into the bathroom and half in the hallway. A tirade to Rouen where the checks were set up. I pass the administrative part and I go into a crowded shed of people with drivers lined up for brands. I push my bike and i squat, all Yamaha, private and officers, in the lead Motor France and Byrd.

I arrive and they already look at me, unique with the mechanics in tow and two young ladies who helped me keep documents, helmet and overalls, while Tullius and Chicco stroves to fix at me the obligatory rear lights which I had ignored. A few moments and in the shed burst ten (10!) my friends with a stadium scream "FIOREEEE" left Bologna without being able to tell me anything, all in a camper van of six. An incredible shame, even the fans!

Then finally we start! With mid-race road books tucked everywhere in your jacket, dressed like a palombaro from the cold that there was. Two days of state and provincial elections to Marseille, passing through Paris and Burgundy. In a stretch of mountain, it was snowing and the anxiety of arriving late blew me several refreshment points where the locals had set up real village parties with ramps, Arches, banners and interviews. In a small village they gave me a burning coffee and leaned two croissants on the filter case, away on the fly even there with the snack hovering over the tanks.

So I reached a group and queued, there were even the two official Yamahas and the pace was good for me, on the ground there was a thin layer of compact snow. When I got to a big service area, I see everyone's coming in. for a stop and full, i'm going to accode, but before we get in Peterhansel, probably fooled by the pile of snow at the side of the road, doesn't see the sidewalk and slips into the ground. I can hear him undead, his assistant (on road bikes) helps him lift with difficulty, then I go down and grab his pigtail and in three we pull up the bike.

As soon as you enter, together with the distributor, another stadium scream "FIOREEEEEE", four drunk friends, around wineries celebrating New Year's Eve! As soon as they saw motorcycles they ran screaming to hug me. I feel a hand on his shoulder and it was he, Peterhansel, looking behind my back to read the name and tells me: "excuse moi Fiorini, but you who are you in Italy with all you fans who take you with you?” My answer was: "none, i've never won anything, but I have a lot of friends". And more laughter!


Dakar 1992 | The premiere of Patrizio Fiorini

It was my first Dakar, my best. I left at the bottom of the Ténéré, and there, I was loaded onto the balai truck, abandoning and losing my bike forever. The next stage was neutralized in a transfer that went down in history as more dangerous than the special, N'Giugmi to N'Djamena.

After that stage, no more no retreating (among the bikes). I was so that I didn't want to hear anything about Le Cap anymore. I managed to get to an airport between taxi passes and makeshift vehicles, and catch a flight home from Niamey.

I arrived in Italy that the race was already over, still dressed as a motorcycle with boots, suit and helmet in hand. Learned of the death of Lara from the friend who picked me up at night in Malpensa. I have such a beautiful but devastating memory of that edition that makes me say today “I was there”.

But in those days I cursed myself. Never edition so ramshackle and unlucky. Very few subscribers. In its approximation, organization Gilbert Sabine gave me bivacchi in contact with the champions, where they themselves had little assistance. An edition where private and officers ate together. Nice people. Good memories.

Walter Surini #30

Walter Surini to the finish in Cape Town in 1992

Twice at the start and twice at the finish, back in ' 91 in Dakar, 36th, in Cape Town, 20th. Walter Surini has again shown to have the ability and temperament to deal with grueling African Marathon. Defending the colors of Kawasaki LP Italy paid off the great trust accorded him by bringing the 500 Kle twin-cylinder four-stroke from one end to the other of the dark continent by tapping the success in the category 500 (It has long been leading the provisional merit list) and hitting the 500 International, reserved for drivers with good results in international rally.

The pilot of Mangalore completed his second adventure in Dakar finishing twentieth absolute on Kawasaki – the jump of a stamp for a well known errata for road-book cost him a penalty of 12 hours.

Great satisfaction upon arrival. Maletti is winner of the cat. up to 500 CC.

Great satisfaction of Surini with teammate Maletti upon arrival.

– And’ been more exciting to reach Dakar last year or Cape Town this year?
“They were both beautiful sensations. It was the first time in Dakar, It was the end of an adventure waiting to be discovered, in Cape Town I was impressed by the welcome we have bestowed, the enthusiasm of the spectators. If I really have to choose was nicer arrival ' 92 because the race was more difficult, more tiring and stressful. That's not true, as has been said and written, in the second part the race was a walk. Yes, There are more twists at the top of the rankings but we crossed treacherous paths and very hard, It was not a vacation, I can assure you. Who said the opposite or withdrew halfway through or made transfers by plane.”

– It was nevertheless disappointing one cannot deny. If it were part of the organization that changes would?
“I would still bet on complete crossing of Africa but I would carry out the race in contrast, from South to North, from Cape Town to Tripoli. Think, in early stages with short postings just to create the right climate and then, in the desert, the great final selection. Of course there would be disadvantages in this case, for example the transportation in South Africa would affect the timing of, but from a competitive point of view you would come up with a competition more interesting and uncertain until the very last.”

Surini. Dakar

Walter Surini on Kawasaki KLE 500 IP Team Italy

– From 36th in the twentieth was a big step forward. Merits of more experience or even what else?
“First could be even much better, without the jump of timbre in the final and the subsequent heavy penalty I could earn up to five positions. Some experience has played a significant role but crucial was the reliability of my Kawasaki, a bike sometimes inadequately powerful, with a non-specific trim but very reliable. Than twelve months before I have troubled a lot less, did not have serious breakage even if for a few days I ran without the fifth gear, I could get to the bivouacs within a reasonable time and then come back much more rested and polished at the start of the next fraction. And all this despite our Organization has had to do without very soon helping truck forcing us to limit replacement of worn parts and often begging some tarpaulin or other spare parts.”

– But exactly what happened that day who missed the passage control?
“That was a deadly stage, really very challenging, and the incident happened to me has happened to several other drivers. Sure I arrived a few minutes late to the morning briefing but what led me to the error was a false note of the road-book. It made me take a runway parallel to the one, in the middle of the vegetation, and I couldn't help noticing the stamp, that maybe was very close to where they transited. I was penalized with twelve hours, the inconvenient cost me really expensive.

– Its levels are unable to equalize the costs or even participate in this race involves economic sacrifices?
“I tied the score but objectively after such a grind, having spent a month between dust and sweat, their ground thousands of kilometres I don't seem to mean a heresy when I say that something in your Pocket should also remain. Besides us pilots were so, the passion too often makes us do irrational things.”

– Now in his future what's?
“At the end of February account to achieve the commercial helicopter pilot while pilot patent expect Kawasaki defines its upcoming programs. Certainly account to participate in some important rally.”
by Danilo Sechi


Patrick Faure, My Dakar

Category Malles Bike: i.e., the organization takes a case with your spare parts and, I think, two wheels. You in a field set, lighted, with various services type: gazebo, compressor, idropulitirice, welding machine, mechanics of the organization when available, place for tents, showers ... you have to deal with it to do everything.


Pretty much what in Africa in the years ' 80 and ' 90 was a semi-official pilot treatment. In those years the private started with Backpack, and at most, some spare parts on a truck. The most "rich" had a mechanic along with other pilots and some extra spare.
Then there were ten "officers", but they were on a different planet. I could feel lucky, Thanks to a friend, I had loaded on a truck in the race, a case with oil, filters, inner tubes and a replacement motor. And a bag with some clothes over the ones I was wearing since the verifications in Rouen.

At the second stage in Libya on my friend's truck Stefano Pirola Lissone breaks, decide to save what can be saved on my way home. All I managed to do was deliver the bag with clothes in a car by a French team, a Toyota Team South which remained very private walk two stops after. Just in time to leave the bag at the bivouac, the sleeping bag no, What if they left him in the car ... I came months after home with greetings and gadget South Team.


So at the bivouac of the second leg in Libya, I found myself as I was for days, only boots on the feet, without a drop of oil for motorcycle, without sleeping bag (the tent was not expected), filters or anything for the unexpected. The clothes that I found were the last thing I needed, I had been traveling for years alone without providing anything for me, just for the bike, and see me deliver the bag by two gentlemen of bad luck on 4 wheels, It seemed a tease, but they were so beat up that ringrziai, We spent a fine evening together, We exchanged addresses us by promising a nice car and motorcycle team for the following year (dreams from bonfire under the stars).

At the bivouac of the first stage I couldn't even find my truck, the chaos was total, a storm of wind and rain had reduced the area close to an airport in a quagmire of mud and sand. I remember Montebelli and Mabuya, friends who I sold the bike, maintain their 660 under a makeshift space from flood Yamaha BYRD. I I wandered until dawn trying to lie down on the plastic sheeting of whom had managed to open the curtains below a large gazebo. From there onwards, until my abandonment for breaking change between Keep and Chad, I lived by tricks, to latch around, to sleep wrapped in the tarp by survival curve under trucks.


Read today that you are tired because you're sleeping 3 and a half hours, because "touches" the Malles Bike, It makes me smile.

In the picture, are the year after the second stage in Morocco, Guido right foot still on the engine, the platform remained between Montpellier and Marseille maybe got stuck in the machine of Paul Maurice, a drunk that he cut the road in transfer. I left around the ditch all the tools, the headlights, Hull parts, pigtail, waterproof suit (It was raining there, too ...), the little finger of his right hand and two ribs. See Franco Picco and Edi Orioli help me and, a backslapping telling me "by hold on", He let me continue, always with my cash from an individual to seek a platform compatible to be welded with the brake lever stub that I had left.

I left there too, in Algeria, I arrived in late stage over the departure of the day after, 980 km inside and outside the great Western Erg, the classic stage of pruning that relieved the TSO in view of the entrance in black Africa. From the day of the accident in France I slept (bad) just that first night, the ribs were waking up., for four stages do not I lay ever. At the start of each stage doctors, they knew of the accident, I made a visit to see how I was put, pressure, eyes, reflections and other rubbish that I avoided again, just to put things in motion (lights required for es.).


I went home in motion as in my travels, with Tunis-Genoa, fitter than when I started, with the bike crushed but finally in place and efficient.

In ' 97 I discovered the category wellness Malles Bike. To have my mechanic still don't speak. Find me all those services at, It seemed another world, clean the filter with compressed air is important stuff, have a mechanic and a tire shop that sooner or later you over your wheel or spare part (only for owners of ktm at time) sgravava me a lot of hours of work that I could take on the road book and make that beautiful work with colored highlighters that you often see in today's pictures. Always sleeping cheap anyway.

I dropped out of the race between Mali and Senegal before hurt seriously, I took too many risks to keep going at all costs, We left from Dakar and the heat was too. Well for me that I was the hair of lucidity to decide to stop. Bad went to a French colleague who saw him on the ground with the cars around on a red track with ruts funds as the whole wheel. At the bivouac you knew was dead and I was impressed, perhaps too, or fortunately.


FL-1997Even today this Dakar us stories and characters to the limit of endurance, I like less than the Paris-Dakar, but it is still a good race. Pity about all that "civilization" that I see around the pilots, too many people, too many services, too all (at the bivouac turn even of fine ladies ...).

Africa and the Sahara are unique, Luckily I tried.

Pedro Amado 1992

Pedro Amado Dakar 1992

A heroic already used to, Pedro Amado in the race during the Dakar 1992 and regularly at the finish of The Cap at 28° location on a Yamaha XTZ 660 Marathon!


Edi Orioli Dakar 1992

The Cagiva Elefant of Edi Orioli – unofficial the pre departure Lacchiarella, on the occasion of the Dakar 1992.
Photos of Clement Canino


Jutta Kleinschmidt Dakar 1992

Huge Jutta Kleinschmidt, that led to the finish of The Cap the heavy BMW in a prestigious 23rd place in the absolute Edition 1992. Heroic dakariana!


Gualini racing with Yamaha to Dakar 1992

Do it yourself for three, and in the name of autarchy funny «Gualo» has managed to become one of the most significant characters of the environment, Perhaps the most famous private ever.
Eight times in the race in Dakar, organizational staff member Camel Trophy, pilot and journalist, for once captain of representative of Bergamo to games without frontiers, made them really all.

Two years ago he was also the first private citizens on arrival of the Dakar, While in ' 91 fell down. Has 38 years and not spring!
Official cannot be defined 100%, But even more privatissimo: for Paris-Le Cap Gualini has got one of the Yamaha OW C5 shipping to race last year by pilots BYRD, similar to those used in this edition of the rally from Mas and Cavandoli.
The twin-cylinder 750 cm3 should allow some good exploits at bergamasco, that assistance has a Mercedes Unimog truck driven by Silvanus Daniel and Luigi De Podest, two items from the Camel Trophy which already last year accompanied him to Africa, as Claudio Macario, Airborne mechanic.

Source motosprint
For photos of Lacchiarella thanks Clement Canino