Ellen Lohr presents new desert rally co-pilot
- 35-year old Detlef Ruf will be Ellen LohrÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s co-pilot in the M-Class prototype entered by Team ORC Sport-Service for the 2006 Dakar Rally.
- A two-week test with the brand-new rally prototype, executed in Tunisia in the second half of September, will represent the first appearance of the new pairing Lohr/Ruf.
- The Dubai Rally, held from 7th to 14th November is supposed to represent the racing premiere for the team with its new car and Ellen Lohr and Detlef Ruf in the cockpit.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“I purposely took my time to find a professional co-pilot who suits our team,Ã¢â‚¬? says former DTM ace Ellen Lohr. Ã¢â‚¬Å“IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m convinced that it is vital to be a well-rehearsed team, particularly when it comes to marathon rally racing. Hence, we signed a long-term deal. Detlef is young and highly motivated, yet, at the same time heÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s got a lot of experience as co-pilot in the Dakar and other rallies.Ã¢â‚¬?
Detlef Ruf, who resides in Bavaria, Germany, has been contesting rallies since late in the 1980s. For five years already, he has been working as professional co-pilot, and in the past three years, the 35-year old gathered Dakar experience as co-pilot in fast racing trucks. Ã¢â‚¬Å“Desert rallies are the greatest you can compete in as a co-pilot,Ã¢â‚¬? he says. Ã¢â‚¬Å“And the Dakar represents the pinnacle of desert rally racing. To meet this challenge together with a racing driver as renowned and professional as Ellen Lohr is just great.Ã¢â‚¬?
Testing in Tunisia Ã¢â‚¬â€œ the baptism of fire for the new M-Class prototype
The close to Stuttgart based Team ORC Sport-Service plans to extensively test the rally prototype Mercedes ML 350 Evo II from 18th to 30th September, in Tunisia. Ã¢â‚¬Å“TunisiaÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s track conditions are perfect for testing on different terrains and adjusting the set-up to the respective terrains,Ã¢â‚¬? explains Team Principal Hans Baur. From 7th to 14th November, Ellen Lohr and Detlef Ruf will make the first racing appearance, in the Dubai Rally, thus competing with the numerous Marathon World Cup competitors who are going to contest this event. Ã¢â‚¬Å“Above all, the Dubai Rally mainly represents a learning programme, for us,Ã¢â‚¬? reveals Ellen Lohr. Ã¢â‚¬Å“The field in marathon rallying is extremely competitive, therefore, we want to gain experience and to get used to one another Ã¢â‚¬â€œ and we want to see were we stand, compared to the other teams.Ã¢â‚¬?