Already a stage winner in his debut rally racing season, Rodrigues' teammate Adrien Van Beveren aims to continue his impressive 2016 campaign at the Merzouga Rally. Looking forward to more racing time aboard his WR450F Rally machine, the Frenchman has already put his name amongst the favourites for stage victories in the dunes of Morocco.
"I'm happy I'm lining up for one more rally - the Merzouga Rally. For me it's really important to get as much racing time as possible in order to gain more experience ahead of my second Dakar," Van Beveren explained.
"I love testing myself in competition and my goal is to make the most out of this challenge in order to improve. The terrain and the conditions in Morocco are ideal to test ourselves, too. Overall we've done a tremendous amount of work with the WR450F Rally and it's down to us now to prove the capabilities of our new machine. I'll try to remain focused and avoid mistakes and if everything goes to plan I know we can fight for a good overall result in this rally."
Jose Leloir, Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team manager, added, "The Merzouga Rally gives us a great opportunity to continue our hard work ahead of the upcoming Dakar Rally. Merzouga is a long and demanding race with tricky navigation and long stages in sandy or stony terrain.
"We want to offer our riders more time in real racing conditions and help them further improve their navigation skills. Up until now we're really satisfied with the development of our WR450F Rally bike. Our target is to have a competitive machine that offers high levels of confidence to our riders in all conditions, allowing them to show 100% of their abilities. We know that each one of our riders is capable of winning stages.
"It's a long rally and each day will bring a different challenge. We're confident we can fight for the podium and like always we'll give our best to make it happen," Leloir concluded.
Kicking off with a Prologue on Sunday, May 22, the 2016 edition of the Merzouga Rally will see 122 participants set off for a six-day adventure of more than 1,000 kilometres in the dunes of south eastern Morocco.
Main Photo: Helder Rodrigues