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Gerard Farrés says farewell to Dakar after the beginning of the eighth stage due to a malfunction, hypothermia and altitude sickness

12/01/2015
On Monday the rider for the Gas Gas team leaves the Dakar after suffering a mechanical problem at km 20 of the special between Uyuni and Iquique. The freezing temperatures and altitude sicknessforced Gerard Farrés to be evacuated to a hospital with symptoms of hypothermia and lack of oxygen, in this difficult stage of cold and four thousand meters in altitude.

Gerard Farrés says farewell to the Dakar after suffering a breakdown at kilometer 20 in the special. The Gas Gas rider has tried by all means to solve the problem and resume the race, but the low temperatures and rain have forced the final abandonment of Farrés, after being evacuated to a nearby hospital at Uyuni by the organization, suffering from symptoms of hypothermia and lack of oxygen.

In Sunday's stage the riders crossed the border between Chile and Bolivia and were greeted enthusiastically by the Bolivian public in the rain and low temperatures. At dusk, thermometers plummeted at the bivouac in Uyuni and participants in the bike category, unassisted and with little warm clothes provided by the organization for the break in the marathon stage, had to resign to spending a cold night at an altitude of 4,000 meters, before making their way back on Monday to Iquique to reunite with their team and assistants.

The lack of oxygen and cold has dented the motards that on Sunday, as did the cars on Saturday, have taken an overnight on the desert plain of the Salar de Uyuni. Then on Monday morning, when he had hardly gonetwenty kilometers, Gerard Farrés' bike is stopped by fuel feeding problems, and despite this, the Gas Gas rider has tried everything possible to repair the damage, then the early low temperatures have triggered the symptoms of hypothermia for the Catalan rider who shortly afterwards was forced to be evacuated after activating his emergency beacon, thus putting an end to his participation in this edition of the Dakar rally. Farrés has been evacuated by helicopter by the organization to a nearby hospital at Uyuni and at the clinic his condition is now satisfactory and not serious after having recovered his body temperature and oxygen levels.

Farrés thus unexpectedly leaves the Dakar Argentina-Chile-Bolivia 2015, after only yesterday having his best stage in this premiere Dakar for the new Gas Gas EC 450 Raid. A first test and first participation that will develop a bike whose base has proven to be strong and competitive in the debut.

Gerard Farrés: "Today, at this stage we all went back to Iquique in a line and the bike stopped at the 20th kilometer. I tried to fix it, but lost the supply of gasoline to the carburetor. It was raining and the temperature was very low, and I have suffered hypothermia. I have lowered my body temperature to 32C degrees -89F- and I have been forced to push the red button on the Iritrack as my life was at stake. It's a shame that we had to leave, but I prefer that we gave everything and we fought to the fullest. I've tried to solve the problem until the last moment, but we had to leave, not because of a fall, as has been said, it was because of a mechanical problem and cold, the conditions were very bad. Yesterday we arrived at the bivouac in Uyuni very cold, we were at four thousand meters and the situation was very adverse. In fact, we thought today we would not leave, but ultimately this did not happen. The situation was very critical and in other circumstances if the bike had not stopped, I probably would have tried to follow, but today was impossible and has left us no other choice but to leave the race."

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