Ronn Bailey CEO and Founder of Vanguard Integrity Professionals is only U.S. Participant in Russia to China Off-Road Rally
Now that the detailed 17-stage route of the world’s longest off-road race has just been announced, the sole U.S. participant Ronn Bailey is making final preparations on his “surprise” vehicle design before shipping it to St. Petersburg for the start of the race on June 12.
Bailey is CEO and founder of Vanguard Integrity Professionals which provides software and services that solve complex security and regulatory compliance challenges for government agencies and Fortune 500 companies around the world.
The TransOrientale organizer, Rene Metge Concept Company, is running the first TransOrientale Rally from St. Petersburg, Russia to Beijing, China – more than 10,000 km in 17 days – from June 12 to June 28.
The Rally will include 17 stages with timed specials in each phase:
Stage 1: Saint-Petersburg - Rogatchevo (834 km, Special: 71km). The quickest part of the race takes off from the city into the Russian forest. This phase has sandy tracks and includes more challenging, high speed areas.
Stage 2: Rogatchevo - Petrovsky (736 km, Special: 92 km). Takes drivers deep into Russia where pine trees and silver birches line the roads. More then 75% of this stage is sand tracks surrounded by forests and glades.
Stage 3: Petrovsky - Yelabouga (574 km, Special: 152 km). The checkpoint takes place on the verge of the Volga River where drivers will enter Tatar country. Drivers have to be wary of ruts in the winding then long, final stretch of road.
Stage 4: Yelabouga - Mrakovo (693km, Special: 123 km). In Stage 4, drivers need to concentrate intensely on navigation control as the track winds through fields and disappears sometimes. This segment includes both dirt and sandy roads.
Stage 5: Mrakovo - Bogotse (630km, Special: 294 km). Stage 5 brings the drivers through the mounts of Ural, the gateway between Europe and Asia. Competitors will discover a mid-range stage cut by valleys and fords in the highest part of the Ural’s. The trail borders an oil pipeline with changing landscapes and gravel bed track.
Stage 6: Bogotse - Arkalik (705km, Special: 327 km). This part marks the beginning of the marathon stage, which is fast paced and difficult to navigate since it takes place on a gravel track with lots of bushes in the way. Incredibly long straightaways seem endless.
Stage 7: Arkalik - Botakara (692km, Special: 322km). Competitors will reach their highest average speed in this stage that crosses many fields on a gravel track. Drivers need caution at fords where the water level changes, which can slow their average speed.
Stage 8: Botakara - Ayaguz (729km, Special: 446km). The Transorientale’s longest phase, with dirt and gravel tracks. Drivers must beware of stone-lined tracks that run between huge prairies.
Stage 9: Ayaguz - Karamay (528km, Special: 82km). This is the last stage in Kazakhstan, a short phase beginning in the prairie gravel and sand. Steep and slippery fords are available but difficult to traverse as are the winding paths through mountains that drivers must navigate.
Stage 10: Karamay - Turfan (782km, Special: 341km). In this stage, drivers enter the first Chinese special which starts with 20 km of rough trails where the convoy first crosses. All vehicles must cross the border at the same time. The trails are made of grass and dirt and get quicker until the checkpoint, which is in mid-stage. Next, a swift toboggan run that opens up into Chinese sandy dunes.
· Stage 12: Turfan - Hami (513km, Special: 413km). Throughout gravel tracks, competitors will be driving below sea level in Turfan. The trail then switches to dunes until the checkered flag. This stage features 25 km of difficult sandy dunes. The trail borders treacherous, gigantic cliffs towards the end.
· Stage 13: Hami - Quinguan (727km, Special: 436km). An extremely long stage and hard to navigate with a rocky start. Competitors will race for 80 km among sandy and difficult dunes to find their way out of the rocks. However, navigation will be easy.
· Stage 14: Quinguan - Alxa Youqi (636km, Special: 286km). This stage starts with a tiny trail of dirt and gravel and goes into a deep valley. Drivers face deep gorges before hitting numerous sandy dunes which will impede navigation. The last part of the stage, with gravel and grass, is easier.
· Stage 15: Alxa Youqi - Bayan Hot (589km, Special: 202km). Starts in the heart of the Badain Jaran' desert (South Mongolia), which includes the highest sandy dunes (500 meters high), before competitors begin a rough race downhill. Navigation is difficult zig-zagging through lakes and dunes.
· Stage 16: Bayan Hot - Hohhot (740km, Special: 121km). Last stage of 2008 Transorientale. Very fast but tricky. More than 121 km of dunes that are difficult to navigate.
· Stage 17: Hohhot - Beijing (616km) Arrival- Beijing- Great Wall of China. Participants will meet at the Great Wall of China, 80 km from Beijing.
About Ronn Bailey
For more than three decades, Bailey has been a recognized leader in information security technology. He has worked closely with governmental agencies and Fortune 500 companies worldwide to solve security issues at the highest levels. Bailey decided his first off-road race should be the 2005 Dakar. Since then, Bailey has raced in the 2005 Rallye Maroc race in Africa, the Dakar in 2006 and 2007, and, most recently the Rally Tunisia race. The TransOrientale 2008 will be his 12th race. For more information on the race, visit Transorientale 2008 - St Pétersburg/Pékin