Tunisia : Nissan Aventure - Leg 7
The final special stage, including a 293-km timed sector between Ksar Ghilane and Djerba, must have seemed very long to the Team Nissan Aventure crew… However, the beach-front finish, a sign of deliverance for all those still in the race,
was an emotional moment. Christian Lavieille and Arnaud Debron, with their Nissan Pathfinder, did not hide their delight and satisfaction after seven days of intense competition. Team Nissan Aventure has taken the lead of the T2 Production World Cup, and finished 7th overall. A magnificent performance, especially considering the quality of the field for this event.
This final leg, between Ksar Ghilane and Djerba, was far from being a formality. There were many navigational traps along the route between the olive groves, which could have upset the classification. But it would have taken more than that to discourage our two friends.
Christian reached the finish line, to the applause of his team, relieved to have finished and to have successfully achieved the first stage of his World Cup challenge : « The first part of the stage was quite bad. Afterwards, the route became more technical, and I must say that I enjoyed myself with the Pathfinder in the narrow sections. I am very pleased with our result. We have started our participation in the T2 World Cup in the best possible way. As no-one scored any points in Argentina in the first round, we are now in the lead.
I am also extremely happy to have finished 7th overall. Before the start, as well as hoping to win the T2 class, to finish in the top ten would have been a great result, and we've come in seventh. It's fantastic ! I would like to thank the whole Nissan Dessoude team as well as Nissan France, who entrusted me with this task. Thanks to the mechanics who took care of the Pathfinder every evening, without whom we would not be here today, without forgetting André Dessoude and all the support he gave us. This week has been incredible. Of course, I would like to particularly thank my faithful « Nono » for his excellent work, and for his support. Now we will have to work out the rest of the calendar, as the Rally of the Orient has been cancelled, so we have to examine the calendar carefully.»
A smiling Arnaud Debron was far from unhappy… « The final leg was quite close. The navigation was far from easy, but it's great to be here. Christian has driven a fine race, and I am very happy to drive with him. It's the start of the adventure ! »
Team Manager André Dessoude was relieved. His ‘ protégé' crossed the finish line without any problems : « Christian put in a perfect race. He adopted a very reasonable pace, he pushed when he had to, but most importantly he took care of the Pathfinder. The vehicle is intact. He has the potential to go fast, but can be cautious when it is necessary. I think he has understood the T2 philosophy. Arnaud is full of good advice for Christian, as, it must be remembered, he has already won the Production World Cup with a certain… Luc Alphand. For me, the duo formed by Christian and Arnaud makes an ideal partnership. There are plenty of exchanges of ideas between the team and the crew, and everything always makes sense. I am really happy about that. »
The next round of the World Cup for Cross Country Rallies will be the Transiberico Rally (Portugal-Spain) from the 11th to the 16th May, followed by Morocco in early June.
Press Release Nissan Aventure