batec mobility batec handbikes

batec mobility batec handbikes

BATEC RAPID 2

 

batec rapid 2

 


“The Dakar rally is a unique experience that lets you discover countries, small villages of people that take you in and incredible landscapes,” says Òscar Lanza. Òscar is a sports consultant and driver representative, in addition to being a wheelchair and BATEC ELECTRIC user, and has experienced the last five editions of the Dakar rally first hand as a member of the MINI-MONSTER team.

“Of all the landscapes, undoubtedly, I would choose the desert and the dunes. And from an emotional standpoint, the three victories are unforgettable: at Dakar 2012 and 2013 with Stéphane Peterhansel and at Dakar 2014 with Nani Roma. Being on the podium with the whole team, satisfied with a job well done, is priceless.”

Although, naturally, there are difficult moments as well, “The worst and most recent, this year, when Nani Roma was eliminated in the first leg,” says Lanza.

 

dakar in a wheelchair


Dakar is an extraordinary adventure in every way, but in a wheelchair it is truly difficult as a result of the harsh mobility conditions. “You do up to 1,000 km per day, sometimes you hardly sleep and neither the accommodations nor the transport options are accessible. It’s a total of 14,000 km in thirteen days. Imagine how tired you end up!”

The worst, indisputably, is the heat. The high temperatures mean the wheelchair spokes get really hot and it can be impossible to move. In addition to the climate conditions, the terrain is another huge obstacle when you’re in a wheelchair.

Of Oscar’s five years at the Dakar rally, the last three have been with his BATEC ELECTRIC. This has made it a different experience altogether. “The long distances, the sand and the rocks at the campsite, with Batec are no problem.”

 

dakar in a wheelchair


This year’s Dakar rally went through Argentina, Bolivia and Chile, three countries with widely varying terrain. “The worst, Copiago (Chile), where you couldn’t even move because it was all beach sand. But in Salta and San Juan (Argentina), it was all asphalt and there was even a racetrack where we got to take the Batec out for a spin”.

The first Batec Óscar took to Dakar was grey and sort of a guinea pig. He came back with all sorts of ideas on how to improve it and make it more durable on any type of terrain. “We added the foot-protector plate for the sand, which is now standard. We also had some technical difficulties and the sight of all the MINI mechanics working on the Batec was really funny. I’ve got quite a few stories, like when I decided to go to the finish line of one of the stages in the dunes with the Batec and I got stuck. Peterhansel had to come get me with his car. Or when I went through the drive-through at McDonalds with the Batec”.

 

dakar in a wheelchair


Dakar 2015 was Óscar’s third year with the Batec and he did it with the BATEC SPECIAL EDITION of the BATEC ELECTRIC handbike designed for more advanced users: the BATEC RAPID. “Taking the RAPID has been fantastic. In addition to the speed, which can reach 30 km per hour, some of the other features that made me feel totally secure are the brakes and the carbon-fibre body. Of course I also identify with its more racing-style image ;-) Without a doubt, I’ve found my perfect travel companion for the Dakar rally!”

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