04 janeiro 2007

Robby Gordon arrived at the Start in Portugal.

With the start of the 28th running of the Dakar Rally pending, the entire crew for the team USA Hummer/Monster Energy/Toyo Tire arrived in Lisbon, Portugal. Final preparations are underway and once again the team has been unified in Europe. The initial group of crew members arrived in Brussels, Belgium on December 27, 2006. Their primary objective was to meet with customs officials to pick up the support vehicles that were shipped from Savannah, Georgia back in November and then to drive them to Portugal. Once these three support vehicles were released from customs, the crew began their trek to Portugal. Driving through France and then into Spain, they met up with Robby and two other crew members who had flown in to Madrid, Spain to join the caravan and to celebrate the New Year.

A night of celebration was followed by a morning of anticipation as the team drove the support vehicles for the final leg of the trip into Lisbon, Portugal arriving just after 5:00pm on New Years Day. Once in Lisbon the details of the following days were finalized and a strategy put into motion to make the most of the days ahead.

The remainder of the team flew from the US to Portugal and arrived January 2, 2007 at 9:30 in the morning. The hotel became a command point for everyone to organize their personal bags and to properly organize the equipment and supplies that would be crucial to the success of the team through out the Dakar rally.

To most this organization process may not sound like such an enormous task. But consider some of the numbers. The team was provided with most of the clothing and camping gear necessary for the rally. A team of twenty one members that will be camping for 16 days and 15 nights would need a minimum of 336 pair of socks, 42 pairs of shoes, 210 sweatshirts, 336 t-shirts, 21 jackets, 63 hats and 336 pair of pants. Additional camping gear consisted of 21 tents, 21 sleeping bags, 21 air pillows, 21 air mattresses, 21 Thermal blankets, 63 Ogio gear bags, and 21 Ogio backpacks. And that’s just the basics for the crew members!

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