“We never ever give up”
Martin van den Brink had an unbelievable year. In the second stage of the 2016 Dakar his truck -a brand new Renault- caught fire and burned down to the ground. The captain of the Mammoet Rallysport team -a fireman himself- could do nothing. But already the day after he was making new plans, together with Mario Kress of MKR, the technical brains behind the Renault project. They build a new truck, a Torpedo model this time. With this Sherpa Van den Brink won several stages in the Silk Way Rally and eventually finished in third. And then the impossible happened. During a test drive in the Czech Republic, preparing for the Morocco Rally, halfway September, also this truck burned down. Van den Brink was desperate: he was running out of time and out of money. But again he proved that nothing is impossible. With the help of his loyal sponsors and an awful lot of effort from Mario Kress and his team in less than two months a new Sherpa was build. Supported by Czech mechanic Daniel Kozlovsky, who helped building the truck, and experienced navigator Marcel Blankestijn, Martin van den Brink is utterly motivated to bring this miracle truck to the podium.
“It was an eventful, emotional and quite disastrous year, with two trucks on fire. The first time was hard, but the second time was unbelievable. We had made big steps in developing the truck and did quite a lot of rallies: the Libya Rally, the Silk Way Rally. Yet we could use all the information from those rallies in building and improving the new truck. The Sherpa is a great truck. Very fast, very well balanced, a pleasure to drive in. We showed what it is capable of. I'm really proud on my team and the guys at MKR for what they have accomplished in such a short period of time. Together we've showed what Mammoet Rallysport stands for: we never ever give up. That's exactly what the Dakar is to me: never giving up.”