Gilles Lalay Paris Le Cap 1992

Gilles Lalay and Chronicle of a death absurd

Gilles Lalay, winner of the Dakar 1989, He died on 7 January 1992 at noon on the dusty track between Franceville and Pointe Noire, in Congo.

The Yamaha rider Italy was in a stretch of transfer, 130 kilometers after the “Special”. A dell machine’ organisation of Paris-Le Cap, a coach of first aid that went in the opposite direction, swept Lalay. A violent impact, the 29-year-old French rider died instantly.

Masters and used to absorb everything, the organizers of the race before they made note that Anita, at that time, was too strong and he had cut a curve, then you are left with the usual considerations: “A tragic sting in the tail of destiny”.
Considered the background, a reconstruction of the accident will never be made with accuracy. The driver of the car, at the time, as an organizer has a name and can not say anything.

In hindsight, called out by the teeth, This is an absurd death in a raid that has no technical meaning and sporty.

He made it with great emotion and elegance Daniele Papi, Yamaha team manager Italy: “We're going home. Without any definite controversy. And died one of ours and we feel wrong to stay here. Certain, all you and’ happened in this race we loved”.
On the dynamics of the tragic accident only shreds of evidence. Angel Cavandoli, a teammate of French Centaur, saw Gilles Lalay ashore, property, no traces of blood on his face.

Why SOS machine goes in the opposite direction to the race there were vague explanations: at first it was said that the car was succoring Jean Christophe Wagner (He also seriously wounded yesterday), then the machine was a normal relief organisation. In a brief press conference, Gilbert Sabine did not add anything to the doubts that we are and will remain. And of course: “The ride continues”, with an obtuse and dogged tenacity, Although all already decided.

The ranking of motorcycle and’ Crystal clear and can not change, because the slopes from N'djamena in Cape Town are narrow, dusty and trees: No one dares do an overtaking, who starts first can no longer lose.

Who we test is extremely, as they did yesterday The doors and strip contains, which are inevitably fallen. The same speech (maybe even more) applies to machines.

Gilles Lalay he understood very well that the ride was over. Monday night at Franceville ate the last pot of “Spaghetti italiens” of his life: they had cooked Matilde Talib and Federico Felix. It was hot and Anita had been at a table of the small camp of tents near the’ plane of Yamaha, until ten o'clock at night. Had commented on the spaghetti cooking: “Too al dente for me that I live near Limoges”. Then it was almost indirectly lifted off a series of criticisms that came: “He's always there’ in the Group, does not risk anything”. Gilles had understood and explained: “And totally unnecessary risk under these conditions. You can't overtake. You can never say that a race is over, but in this case I can't find other definitions”.

It wasn't the first time Anita spake these things. With its Sports Director, Aldo Betti, the French rider had already confided before the start of the Paris Le Cap: “Or you get in your head to Pointe Noire or is over”. But the absurdity of death of Gilles Lalay isn't in these narrow tracks, in danger of overtaking. This race, It costs to each well 27 and a half million lire registration only, does not seem to offer the necessary safety. Or because they want to cross a territory in war or because the machines in your organization are not familiar with the slopes (as and’ took place this year in N’ Gougmi) or because an ambulance coach goes in the opposite direction to the race.

Then it happens, inevitably, that, the world's most famous rally, a serious professional as Anita may be invested by the organizers. Someone commented that it "was an accident by road”. And you have to put your arms out thinking that at the rally, smuggled to the most beautiful in the world, You can die as the Saturday night near a nightclub in Riccione.

Source: Gianluigi D –

  • The long raid just gets more and more’ useless. A long air transfer from Congo all’ Angola, to find the table of arrivals in Namibe the usual ranking: Edy Orioli who wins the stage, but always Stephan Peterhansel who commands the ranking.; Ari Vatanen who takes a satisfaction, but Hubert Auriol who and’ always the car leader.. Definitely the Paris. The Cap does more’ News for crime news, Unfortunately. The ride and’ discounted entry in its last stretch, Gilbert Sabine's already’ thinking which shirt to wear to The Cap, but the body of Gilles Lalay, died in a freak accident Tuesday’ on the runway, and’ still in Pointe Noire, in the Congo. And’ an incredible story. Collected fifty kilometers from the finish, Anita's body and’ been brought all’ Civil Hospital of Pointe Noire. With l’ anguish in the heart, the directors of the Byrd, Daniele Papi and Joseph Belotti, you are instantly moved, experienced l’ French Embassy, the Italian one, the organizers. The paperwork for l’ extradition of Anita's body were complicated, but not insurmountable. It was enough that there was a’ normal organization. And maybe just a “boost” with the authorities’ premises. Once you knew you had to make an application to the Ministry of’ Interior, the two leaders of the Byrd turned all’ Dakar organization to speed up and to ask that a plane arriving from Geneva to more’ soon. Anita's young wife had asked only one thing on the phone: “Riportatemelo as’ soon”. And what would, because’ even the Congolese would have accelerated their procedures. The difficulties’ made them instead even l’ Organization, the same Gilbert Sabine has listed the problems of a transport, also from Switzerland to France, Anita's corpse. And you and’ discovered that’ that, Despite l’ entry of 27 and a half million lire, l’ insurance, the share cafeteria, the deposit and other amenities’ the TSO restrains, in advance, If you die (not totally unpredictable thing, Since in 14 Dakar I've’ 3rd dead States), not c’ and’ anyone that takes you back home. Then the story of Anita and’ become painful. In the absence of’ plane from Geneva, the men of Byrd had found a’ other solution, also ready to “oil” congolese bureaucracy and to load the coffin on their plane: “Let's see if the French reject all’ Airport” He had said, with anger and emotion, Guido Betti. But not c’ and’ have nothing to do. Thursday’ , While the caravan of Paris. Le Cap rested in shocking hotels in Pointe Noire, Joseph Belotti has made the rounds of non-existent offices, He contacted people he didn't know and the other who pretended to nothing. At one point, Some were already’ ready to run all’ Hospital to load the corpse. But all’ last minute always stood a new difficulty’ : We had to find a’ other signature, Another allowed. And none of the TSO was there’ to recommend to aiding the team manager of Byrd. The only indications they were contacting a Ministry, then at a Consulate. Nothing, for l’ former winner of the Dakar 1989 not c’ was no hope of return home, even in death. Belotti then took l’ plane from Pointe Noire to Brazzaville to attempt to speak all’ French Ambassador. So’ , Maybe this morning, Gilles Lalay take’ his last plane to France. Gianluigi D

    Da Rold Gianluigi