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All the Gazelles gathered in Nice for this 29th edition of the rally: preparations and the official start took place in a festive mood!
All participants met at Palais Nikaïa in Nice: the first day was dedicated to the final preparations. Administrative formalities, medical visit, distribution of food rations but also technical inspections are in order. Once stickering is done, it is time for mechanical compliance check, and compulsory equipment is verified. A satellite-linked device is also set up on each vehicle, in order to track them throughout the race.
At the end of the day, everybody gathered for a general briefing: Gazelles are reminded of some of the organisation’s details and of rules once they will be in the desert.
The start took place on Saturday, March 16th. On this second day in Nice, the Rally Start Village is opened to the public and people can visit all event partners on their respective booths.
This official start day is also an opportunity for Gazelles to hand their donations over to Coeur de Gazelles association: it will distribute them throughout the Rally to local communities. School supplies, clothing, medical equipment and toys: 160m3 were collected this year!
Live percussion group and a Zumba session under a sunny sky: the atmosphere is festive! Months of planning are finally over and they are now all ready to get started on this adventure. A pleasant surprise awaits them: there are a couple of artists among Gazelles, and they had the pleasure of performing on stage.
People joyfully listened to “We Love” by Sophie Tapie, from SAINT HONORE crew.
In the middle of the afternoon, all cars got started: the 131 crews in Nice now need to join Sète, where they will take a boat to cross the Mediterranean. They left Nice in a chorus of horns and cheers, from the prestigious Promenade des Anglais.
SAINT HONORE’s crew did not go unnoticed: Kiera Chaplin and Sophie Tapie’s Isuzu X-Max is indeed covered with eye-catching jungle inspired patterns! Their vehicle reflects the new “by Kiera Chaplin” collection which SAINT HONORE co-created with its ambassador.
We wish them the best of luck!
Sophie Tapie and Kiera Chaplin are SAINT HONORE’s crew, number 216.
Photos: Rallye Aïcha des Gazelles du Maroc and Gala
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