A closer look at the endless SSV entry list for Baja Portalegre 500 2019 will reveal several names that once made history in rally-raid but aren’t seen in action for some time. Among those names, there is Heinz Kinigadner and Jutta Kleinschmidt
The Austrian Heinz Kinigadner was part of KTM’s team for many years and was a fundamental element of the amazing success this team conquered on the Dakar Rally and several others. As for the German Jutta Kleinschmidt also started her career on the motorbikes, and was the first woman to win the Dakar Rally. Jutta will be racing an Yamaha YXZ1000R while Kinigadner will be on Bombardier Maverick
Only a few years ago this category was totally controlled by the Portuguese. In the most recent editions, this number started to increase, and for 2019 around 30 foreigners will be present to fight with a huge local field, composed of many fast drivers. In total, and excluding the SSV that will be racing under FIA T3 regulations, Baja Portalegre will host 122 teams.
The SSV program starts on Friday morning with the traditional prologue near Portalegre that will have 5,35km of extension. Shortly after the prologue, the participants will have the first real stage, with 80km that will take them from Gavião to Nisa. But things will become serious on Saturday, where one single stage has to be raced, but a very long one with 350 kilometers. Saturday’s mammoth stage is bigger than many on the Dakar Rally and other similar events. The rhythm of the race will be higher and the track despite being very fun, is also very demanding, making from this stage one of the ultimate challenges the category has to offer on our days.
Keep in mind that in Portugal, the SSV category doesn’t race under the rules the cars federation, but instead it is racing according the rules of the motorbike federation, less complicated and a key for the huge sucess the category is on this Iberian country.
Source: Rally-Raid Network