So the World's premier off-road race is over for 2011. The full Nissan results are below. The list of Nissans listed in the event has shrunk. The list you saw in earlier posts contained info gathered from the Dakar home page which listed a number of Chinese teams as running Nissans--they weren't. They were running either Chery or Great Wall vehicles and thus have now been excluded from the list...Kinda good news as they all DNF'd.
Highest placing Nissan this year? Christian Lavielle and his Team Dessoude Nissan Navara (Frontier). Team Dessoude remains dedicated to the Nissan marque through thick and thin and his 8th place finish this year is excellent, falling only behind the much larger factory efforts of VW and the near factory level effort of BMW. Nani Roma had an excellent run going and was also within the top 10 overall until his Stage 9 DNF while Alfie Cox put forth an solid effort for 18th place.
The other Nissans involved were not even remotely capable of running with the leaders and were there just trying to survive. Of the 17 Nissan entries out of the 140+ entries who began the event, five finished the 2011 Dakar. This is slightly below average as 55 entries finished the race. Nothing to be ashamed of and given that most of the Nissan driven vehicles were not top end efforts, one cannot expect a finishing rate to equal that of VW of BMW. Take Robby Gordon's two team effort for example which is a much higher budget and advanced operation than most of the Nissans seen this year. For all his travels and expenses, what did he get? Two cars entered, two DNFs and an early plane ticket home.
So I am left feeling satisfied but not happy with this year's results. Could be better, could be worse. It is what it is and there's always next year for improvement!
#306 Nani Roma, Gilles Picard, Nissan Overdrive--DNF Stage 9
#312 Christian Lavielle, Jean Michel Polato, Team Dessoude--8th
#317 Andrew "Alfie" Cox, Jurgen Schroder, Nissan Overdrive--18th
#324 Alexander Mironenko, Sergey Lebedev, Nissan Overdrive--DNF Stage 11
#330 Boris Garafulic, Nissan Overdrive--DNF Stage 8
#331 Francisco Luis E Silvia Inocencio, Nissan Overdrive--DNF Stage 5
#334 David Deslandes, Team Dessoude--DNF Stage 8
#339 Frederic Chavigny, Team Dessoude--23rd (2nd in T2 Class)
#381 Carlos Machado de Oliveira, Team Dessoude--DNF Stage 6
#384 Phillipe Porcheron, Team MMO--27th
#394 Jose Manuel Salinero, Guardia Civil Rally Raid--DNF Stage 6
#402 Herve Toscano, Biscauto Team--DNF Stage 8
#409 Dominique Laure, Biscauto Team--DNF Stage 6
#434 Hongzhi Guo, Team Dessoude--DNF Stage 3
#435 Juan Carlos Caceres Simons, Peru Rally Raid Motorsports--DNF Stage 6
#443 Roberti Hernan Javier, Raid 4x4 TV Team--DNF Stage 9
#451 Adriano Vagnini, Raid 4x4 TV Team--53rd