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The Italians to Dakar 1983

Did we mention that the Italian athletes have been unlucky, but until it can speak of bad luck and not of disorganization? Two Italian teams were present at the Paris-Dakar, the Morini assisted by Valentini and composed by Massimiliano Flyers, Gianni Gagliotti and Leandro Caruso. with the addition of Marcus Foligno, a private aided by official team and that of Yarnaha-Belgarda which could count on three XT 550 led by Crossbowmen, the only one who is rated, Baez and Freeman.. Between the two Teams without a doubt the most unfortunate was that of women in Parma.

Balestrieri, Zanichelli, Foligno and Baguio

Balestrieri, Zanichelli, Foligno and Baguio

Paolo Bergamaschi is out of the picture already in Les Garrigues, in France, for a fall and when Balestrieri and Zanichelli traveled to preserves in Ténéré the second had to stop for the breaking of the shock. The biggest limit of three of the Yamaha was the assistance, developing friendship of the famous pilot ensured Gianfranco Bonera who actually did what he could but he had so many cats to skin from losing touch with his own pilots when they began to need him.

Roughly the same fate of the trio of Morini that behind its façade as professional or (Thanks to Zanussi who had them

Marcus Foligno on Morini

Marcus Foligno on Morini

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Fiat Campagnola team support V

sponsored could count on two means of support, (a Fiat Campagnola and Datsun Patrol) HID also organisational failings not due so much ill will as to a workload aocessiva. In fact, when the race entered into the three yellow Morini have some’ lost touch with their assistance and the result was what we saw, the first serious mechanical problems have had to withdraw; even the bravo Valentini who at the beginning of the Paris-Dakar rally seemed really could do well.

The fate of the fourth man Morini, Marcus Foligno, It was even more unusual at the start of the stage Dirkou-Agades involuntarily Bonera trying the bike is finished in ground breaking the fuel tank. Nevertheless, Foligno is riu-SAGRES to share, albeit late, But even for him when the late hours have become too many, and there was the possibility to recover them, came on removal.

Source: Motosprint

The Morini on departure

The Morini on departure

Balestrieri 1986-3

Hau and Crossbowmen Dakar 1986

Heddy Hau chasing a leathery Vinod B on the podium in the final standings of the Dakar 1986.

Balestrieri, Zanichelli, Foligno and Baguio.

The three “Parmigiani” the Dakar 1983

Taken from an article in the 1982, an abstract presenting the team “Parmesan cheese” who participated in the Dakar 1983.
Note the language with which it is treated the subject Paris Dakar, that at the time, the 1982, It was still an unknown argument to large crowds of fans.
We thank the friend Alfredo Margaritelli who sent us the material of this article.

A great big adventure among the most fascinating and challenging slopes of Africa. On the one hand the natural elements and their laws on the other riders, the bikes, the machines, trucks and their technique, create a great challenge.
It's a test of moral and physique of each participant, more than just a rally, is first and foremost a race "total", especially not a raid. Among the events of this kind is undoubtedly the most important in the world. A race of great prestige to both racers and automotive motociclstiche homes, in its preparation and as it unfolded with passion by sportsmen, with more and more interest and curiosity in the press and from television. The next edition of this incredible ride will also be attended by Alexander Freeman., Paolo Bergamaschi, Vinod B. Driven by a passion and supported by a great motorcycling experience these three pilots will address the 10.000 Km. the race with the intention of bringing a prestigious result. If the race is difficult, preparing to deal with it will be absolutely accurate.. Well trained and reliable motorcycle riders are the conditions that will. But not enough: will be prepared and entered the race a car 4×4, that will take place an experienced driver of African roads and a mechanic can intervene both on bikes on the car. This car will be very important. It will be entrusted with the care and transportation of spare parts of motorcycle. Bike, cars and men will be tested beforehand in a survey in Algeria next October (1982 NDR.).
No detail will be overlooked; a small defect becomes a big problem in aggravation of a ride i n Africa. The costs of preparing for and participating in this race must be covered by adequate sponsorships.
Hence the concern to make this event very well known and interesting.
There will be a presentation through both the local and national press either directly in an evening that will be projected slides and movies of last year. A national industry magazine will publish a report directed by three pilots and a photo shoot by a professional after the race.
Who are the 3 pilots? First of all they are three great friends: they know each other's strengths and weaknesses of each. Circumjacent, they understand each other and seamlessly; There should be no need to stress the importance of these things in certain situations.

Born in Parma on 10.1.1960, student in engineering. Motocross and enduro rider from q974, When he won the Italian Championship of motocross youth games.
Regional Champion in 1980. Great motorcycling experience obtained in raids in Europe and Africa.
Stopped by an accident when it seemed were to explode, After two years of inactivity has been able to start over with great willingness and enthusiasm. Fast driver, whimsical, spectacular, of great presents of mind, is considered to be the Joker of the Group.

Born in Parma on 20.1.1959, student in architecture. In 1976 He began to devote himself to the ropes of enduro that alternated some motocross race. After a few seasons of little commitment, increasingly plagued by the "illness" of motorcycle wanted to jump the gun in order to engage in the most important races and challenging.
Regional enduro champion in the 1980 and in 1981 He played all the Italian championship competitions, enduro European and world.
While not seizing yield spectacular results, demonstrated, clasping regularly completed also most difficult races and getting regular placements, great reliability and capacity. It's methodical, very accurate and determined: a safety.

Born in Parma on 2.5.1959, student in economics. Regional Champion and Italian enduro in the cadets 1979. Regional Champion, Runner up in the Championship's junior national champion Italian enduro and motocross of University students 1980, 13St place at the European Championships and the World Championships of enduro 5° 1981. So much experience and so many results: confirmation for a rider who showed great skill and great will to arrive at these levels.

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Andrea Balestrieri Dakar 1983

Not everyone knows this, but the first Italian to see the goal as part of Dakar, Fu Vinod B in 1983. On a Yamaha Xt 550 with few changes from the standard model finished in 24th place in overall standings.

The bike after a thousand vicissitudes is finally in good hands, Angel and Philip of Dune motion the care with the care and respect it deserves.


Honda NXR 750 Dakar 1988

The excellent results achieved by Italian riders in marathons in Africa and in particular in the Paris-Dakar, begin to have proper recognition on the part of Japanese houses. For the first time this year Honda Italy will take the field with the same bike entrusted by the parent company to the French sister company.

One of the drivers of the team Italian, place under the technical guidance of Massimo Ormeni, will be Vinod B that the Dakar will lead the version ' 88 of NXR 750, winner 1987 with Cyril Neveu African Marathon. The same “Crossbow” pointed out at the Bologna Motor Show the weapon with which he will attempt to become the first Italian winner of the Paris-Dakar. B has already tried the NXR 750 in Tunisia and is excited.

«Respect to Thumper that drove last year, the NXR 750 It is another thing. And a particularly balanced bike, sfruttabilissima even at low rpm. You can resume in quinta da 2000 rounds without the engine betray the slightest problem. The top speed on the straights dirt tracks is fantastic, In addition 190 km/hour, against the 160 scarce of Thumper. Despite being heavier and bulky, handles just as well and the riding position is more comfortable and less tiring. In addition, than the Thumper the engine is less “pulled”, all to the advantage of the reliability, determinant in-and marathons like the Paris-Dakar. The only sealing problems may arise in close and mixed on the rocks, where weight and space are felt, but on the vast expanses of sand the superiority of twins you can't put into question.

It will rather be able to maintain for over twenty days the frantic pace that bike like the NXR can allow».

«Technically speaking», ' 88 version of the Crossbowmen continues «NXR 750 did not undergo substantial changes than the bike that won the Dakar last year. The HRC (the Honda Racing Division) worked primarily on deployment diagrams to make smooth and constant power delivery to each scheme. Were subsequently adopted a number of solutions that simplify the work of mechanics in maintenance operations.
For instance has been obtained on the cylinder a wide window for the control and adjustment of the cam.
In a race like the Dakar is important to evaluate every detail, in this connection an element which may appear unimportant as the crutch was the result of a careful study, not only in the obvious strength of material, but also the shape and inclination necessary to offer the best anchor in the sand.

«Ormeni staff», explains the Crossbowmen ' has further improved in Japan and was preoccupied with the motorcycle with all accessories required for tackling a tough and unpredictable Marathon which is the Paris-Dakar.

Like you know, one of the most difficult problems to solve is the orientation.
To help me this year I even a compass by helicopter and two sophisticated electronic tripmaster. The stages of the Dakar also provide night transfers and in poor visibility, indispensable therefore a more than efficient lighting system. Double front unit has the power of a halogen headlight from car from gran turismo much we had problems to find a protective cage can withstand considerable heat generated.
Powerful even the taillight that for safety reasons it is double the capacity of the tank has remained of 55 liters (of which 20 in a second tank located in the rear and 17,5 broken down into the two side accommodation). The bike weighs when empty 180 Chili, but at full load exceeds 230, better not to think what might happen if it falls to Earth!»

Source Tuttomoto

Special tks Enrico Bondi

Findanno 1984-1

Greetings from Dakar 1984

Postcard with dedication by Beppe Gaulini #29 to Giampiero Fatemian #82 and Vinod B #84.

Photo courtesy of Giampiero Fatemian.

Balestrieri 1986-2

Vinod b and the podium at Dakar 1986

He was the only Italian among the officers not to win a special stage at Dakar 1986, but in the end, Vinod B was the best with the third position proving a great passista. Dowry conferred him at least as much as that of an exceptional Navigator.

"I have finished the race in two hours and fifteen minutes from Neveu explains Crossbowmen and can tell you exactly where I got this delay: an hour and a half left in the Ténéré and surroundings, another half hour just arrived near the border with Senegal, in Red, where did I go wrong track. I took one seemingly parallel, that led me astray. But at that point I had to attempt even though the posting was important and there were not many chances to recover on two cylinders of Neveu and Anita».

You've had, After the race, a chance to try all the bikes featured this year in testing arranged for printing. What were your impressions?

"In two words I can say that the Yamaha FZ 750 is exaggerated, but an unfavorable utilization curve, Besides being too heavy. And’ a monster hard to steer, So congratulations to Olivier Yamaha mono is more or less similar to our Honda. Altogether are equivalent. The twin-cylinder Honda has good power, distributed very well, but you can still work on the frame, While the BMW surprised me altogether: good engine, great couple, good driveability. It is not surprising, in fact: first with Auriol then with Rahier, BMW has done a great deal of experience, now the exploit.

Source motosprint

Honda XL600L

Honda XL 600 l 1986

The motion came directly from Japan in early December; were set up by the research and Development Department, R & D, on the basis of two prototypes used by Balestrieri and De Petri the Pharaohs, so were derived from monoclindriche XL 600 LM.

The team of Honda France had instead of cars driven by twin-cylinder engines developed by HRC, more powerful but their first desert experience. Wire managersItalian action wanted to prioritise the mono for more guarantees that it offered in terms of reliability, However was always considered that to realize these motorcycles in Japan the parent spent, only in study, the beauty of a billion lire.

The machine had a bore and stroke of 100 x 82 mm for a displacement of 643 CC.; the power was not significant due to the poor quality of gasoline found in Africa, However rambled on 51 horses obtained with a compression ratio of 8,5:1 and with a single carburetor 40 mm in diameter.

With gearbox and clutch closely derived from the XL series, the Honda of Dakar could push rates up to about 170 kilometers per hour, Thanks to the new fairing which, the tests carried out in Japan, had proved its worth by allowing you to earn about 10 kilometres per hour.

The wheelbase was 1520 mm, on motion of Crossbowmen and Orioli, While De Petri the machine was a little’ shorter because «Cyrus» had demanded a different inclination of the Steering head tube; the fork is from 43 mm and is of Showa as suspension unit who worked on a Pro Link redesigned with linkage below the swingarm.

Interesting the solution adopted for the hull, three pieces, the bottom had two spare water tanks and about a pound of lubricant to use in case of need; the fuel tank capacity was 36 litres that were increased to 55 rear speakers.

Upon arrival in Dakar they classified; Crossbowmen to 3rd place, Dalia 5° and 6° Edi Orioli.

Aprilia Tuareg Wind 600 1989

Aprilia Tuareg Wind 600 1989

For the first time the Aprilia participates in Dakar 1989 formally: pilots are Vinod B and Scott Freeman., two renowned specialists of African marathons, and the bikes come from Tuareg Wind 600 by series.

Are modified for specific use in Dakar with a large main tank that doubles as a fairing while the fairing with twin headlights remains that of series. The engine is the classic four-valve single cylinder Rotax widerevised by Open mind-lia in order to increase the reliability.

The cooling air remains but an oil cooler was added to the existing one, to decrease the temperature of the lubricating oil. Rated power 46 horses, equal to the series despite being reduced the compression ratio to use poor fuel octane. The fuel is sent to Dellorto by a vacuum pump connected to the engine.

In addition to gasoline tanks there are two more seats down in front of the engine, that contain water are mandatory escort 5 liters of the liquid that the pilot can drink directly into the race by a small electric pump operated by a switch on the handlebars.

The dashboard has an abundant number of tools with oil thermometer, tachometer, trip master and a small traditional compass. The chassis is derived from the motorcycle for sale and is normally based on a steel beam frame with special-shaped tube dra.

Suspensions see increased considerably the hike and the swingarm po-aluminum hydraulic extension is now. For the brakes at the front there is a double disc with single piston floating Brembo calipers clamping, While behind the only disk size 220 mm.

For the article and photos we thank Andrea Torresani