Imagine if a passing Monegasque Monsieur broke down at Sainte Devote just before the Monaco Grand Prix, or if the start at Le Mans were to be spiced up by a stranded hire car at the Dunlop Chicane.
Try as I have to erase the shameful episode from my recollection, my overriding memory of the year was the excruciating moment on January 12 when the Volkswagen Amorak in which I was riding as a passenger lodged itself in soft sand on stage nine of the Dakar Rally.
I should emphasise - slap in the middle of stage nine; precariously in the middle of stage nine. Just beyond a blind crest. With 92 cars and 46 unwitting truck competitors about to bear down on us.
I have to get in early that VW's superb PR man Markus Kleemann cannot take any responsibility for our ineptitude, and professional courtesy prevents me from naming the unfortunate journalist from a Southern Hemisphere publication who was at the wheel when we became stuck - given the limitations of my off-road abilities, and the treacherously fine sand of the Chilean desert, I doubt I would have fared any better.
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