Sainz Sr.: ‘Dakar Rally pushes you to the limit’
Madrid, Sep 29 (EFE).- Carlos Sainz, two-time winner of the World Rally Championship, is preparing for the “beautiful” challenge of participating in the next Dakar Rally with an Audi car equipped with an innovative electric propulsion system.
Sainz has won the Dakar three times (2010, 2018 and 2020) and has countless victories in races around the world.
Experience is priceless and, as he has not lost any of his enthusiasm, he knows that he is at a point in his sporting career in which he wants to continue enjoying racing, which remains his passion.
The challenge of the next Dakar will be driving an Audi, which is taking on one of the biggest motor sport challenges by competing for the first time in the desert with the innovative RS Qe-tron, which combines the electric propulsion system with a converter that recharges the high-voltage battery while driving.
Q: How do you feel about the car?
A: The challenge of going to race in the Dakar with Audi is a great challenge, it is probably the biggest challenge I will face. The level of technology in the car is huge. The amount of work, the amount of engineers working on the project is amazing. Of course I’m really happy and really proud to be a part of that. I thought it was huge, but after working on it for a few months, it’s even bigger and even more challenging than I thought.
Q: Do you think you will be on the podium at the next Dakar?
A: It is too early to say. Sooner or later (the car) is going to be competitive. It probably already is, but it has to be reliable, not for a few days, but for two weeks. The challenge for Audi and any brand is to make a 100% reliable car the first year and that is the difficult part.
Q: Is there anything that particularly surprised you?
A: Driving an electric car in the desert has its advantages. There is no gear change, you always have power, there is no response time, the engine brake works very well. In short, the center of gravity is very low. There are many positives that make the car competitive and reliability is as important as competitiveness.