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July 16, 2008 Vol. 4, No. 15

So there I was, strapped into the seat of a Kamaz Paris-Dakar rally truck, five-point harness and all, with a somewhat crazed but totally silent Russian dude at the wheel. We were on the start/finish straight at the famous Nurburgring race track in Germany, and Boris Somebodyovich was about to try scaring me with a very fast lap of the track. In the rain. With many slower vehicles like buses and tractor-trailers also making laps at the hands of sometimes incompetent drivers from the press. Talk about speed differential.

But I don’t scare easy.

So Boris launches all 700 of his mighty V8’s ponies at once and we roar off to the turn-one hairpin right, a grin on my face and a sullen blank on his. He actually uses a handbrake (a big truck with a handbrake!) to overcome the oversteer, in true rally fashion, and we head off to the sweeping left of turn two, but it seems to have a decreasing radius and there’s a bus – a bus! – going about 3 km/h right in the corner’s obvious line.

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Rolf Lockwood is editor emeritus of Today's Trucking and a regular contributor to

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