N°368 Car PETRUS RACING

GINTAS PETRUS

(ltu)

2007: Ab.
2003: 55th
2002: 51st

2014-2019: Africa Eco Race, Rallye Tunis, Toureg Rally

Interview

“When I heard the Dakar was coming to Saudi Arabia, I decided to have another look”

Gintas Petrus was one of the pioneering Lithuanian drivers who first took part in the Dakar back in the early 2000s. After coming along to the start of the 2001 edition to seek advice and going home with a Toyota Land Cruiser -very basic by today's standards- Gintas and Viktoras Kastelionis became just the second team from their country to complete the rally in 2002. The Vilnius-born entrepreneur also reached the end of the 2003 edition, although his hopes of making it a hat-trick of finishes in 2007 were dashed by engine failure. After the Dakar moved to South America in 2009, Gintas switched his to focus to smaller races, but when it was announced that the world's most famous rally would be heading to Saudi Arabia, he decided it was time for a comeback. The 54-year-old has therefore teamed up with biker Tomas Jancys for his first Dakar adventure in 13 years.

GP: “I did the Dakar for the first time in 2002, when it was still in Africa. I also did 2003 and 2007 and had kids in between. We were already in Lisbon when it was cancelled in 2008, and after that we just decided not to go. Latin America was different, there were a lot of things to cope with, lots of arrangements. And raising kids takes quite a bit of effort! It's not as sexy as racing but it's a full-time hobby. When they grow up maybe they'll be interested in navigating for me, but at the moment I have to drive the pushchair! But when I heard the Dakar was coming to Saudi Arabia I decided to have another look and give it a go. I like racing in the African desert and I think the Arabian desert is probably close enough. I haven't been to Saudi Arabia or the UAE, but I think it's less populated and more open, which is good for amateurs like myself. I really like wide open areas with dunes, and the Dakar is more competitive, which also appealed to me. We have a small team so we have to be realistic, it's about adjusting to your limits and possibilities. We will try to find our pace, keep the car in one piece and make as much progress as we can. In the first few days people are excited so you have to avoid crashes, but the second part of the rally, in empty dune areas, will be more interesting. That's where you can improve your ranking, and it's not minutes but more like hours! Since last year we've had a Hilux, which is better prepared and more professional than our previous cars. So we hope to have fun.”

Vehicle

PETRUS RACING

  • Mark : TOYOTA
  • Model : HILUX
  • Performance tuner : Petrus Racing
  • Assistance : Petrus Racing
  • Class : T1.1 petrol modified A-T 4x4

Ranking 2020

Scratch Stage General
1 61 61 61
2 45 45 56
3 47 47 50
4 50 50 49
5 48 47 45
6 45 44 43
7 38 38 41
8 42 41 40
9 45 45 39
10 46 46 40
11 54 54 41
12 42 42 41

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