This was one of the days that you just have to say thank you mountain bikes! With a stomach that was doing hula hoops after breakfast, by the time I got to the portage up to the first special stage, I just wanted the day to end. By the time we hit the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th stages of the day, I wanted the day to never end.
With stage names like raja motores (broken engines), bumps, and moto you know you're in for a treat. But first we had to contend with Special Stage 7 - Santiario (Sanctuary). This cacti covered, rock strewn, technical trail was used in the first Andes Pacifico and drops 1125m over 7km to the valley floor. From there it was a 2 hour shuttle on a road that can best be described as an engineering marvel—climbing 2370m over 29km. And then it was up to us!
The special stages down to Chicureo - part of a moto enduro training ground above Santiago - were full of whoops, doubles and roosted out turns. In the end it took all I could to not shout out moto noises all the way down. Allan said it felt like he was on a dirt bike, and was making 'braaap' noises all the way down. It was all time. The last special stage connected onto the Chicureo trail we shot and filmed the Nomad promos on in 2014 - flat out drifty turns through thorn scrub for days!
Then, after high fives and empanadas, we climbed back into the pickups and drove 2 hours to La Ligua - our new camp for the next two nights.