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Dakar 2017: “It’s not so difficult for me”
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Dakar 2017: “It’s not so difficult for me”

anandmohan

One thing that always stuck with me in conversations with C S Santosh is how much of a challenge navigation is on rally raids. After Aravind KP comes out of the medical room, I spend some time with him in his Sherco van (if nothing at least it is air-conditioned, a huge relief from the heat) as he works on his road book.

Is it difficult I ask. “No it’s fine”, says Aravind rummaging through his backpack for the marker pens. Pointing to the roll for day two’s stage he says, “this is easy, this isn’t much, there aren’t many calls. On the Merzouga rally (in Morocco) it is so technical that the road book is so fat we have to cut it into two and put the second part at refuelling. Compared to that this is easy.”

Dakar 2017: “It’s not so difficult for me”
C S Santosh going through his road book at Dakar 2017

But isn’t reading the road book while riding flat-out difficult? “I have gotten used to it quickly”, says Aravind. “These guys (the Sherco riders) have a very good system. Also for some people it comes quickly, I am lucky to have understood it quickly.”