Four MINI All4 Racing crews finish the 2016 Silk Way Rally in the top five

by Umar Hassan

After 14 long stages, MINI All4 Racing’s hard work was rewarded with four out of the five crews making the top five final positions in the 2016 Silk Way Rally.

The MINI’s had to endure 10,000 kilometres in two weeks as the cars travelled from Moscow to the finishing point of Beijing last Sunday.

It was a Silk Way Rally experience to remember for Yazeed Al Rajhi and Timo Gottschalk as they finished as the lead MINI All4 Racing crew in second place as runners-up of the rally.

While the Russian duo of Vladimir Vasilyev and Konstantin Zhiltsov were third, performing consistently throughout the rally despite being disappointed with some stage cancellations due to the weather.

Britain’s Harry Hunt with German co-driver Andreas Schulz finished in fourth place despite losing a lot of time in the start of the rally to finish high up in the top four positions in the Silk Way. Meanwhile, Aidyn Rakhimbayev and Anton Nikolaev completed the last of the four MINI All4 Racing crews in the top five in fifth.

Bauyrzhan Issabayev and Vladimir Demyanenko were outside the top five, finishing in tenth place to complete five MINI All4 Racing crews in the top ten for the 2016 Silk Way Rally.

Al Rajhi said after finishing the Silk Way “The Silk Way is a very nice rally and we are leaving having had a good experience. The competition was strong and we enjoyed it a lot even though some of the stages were very long and tough.

Hunt added after finishing fourth “I’m kind of relieved it’s over but it’s also a shame because it’s a great race. I personally found it harder than the Dakar, with some of the stages being much trickier. The rally really stepped up and went to a whole different level as soon as we got into China, the heat was more intense and the stages and conditions were harder but the scenery was amazing.

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