The Peking to Paris Motor Challenge 1997
September 6 - October 18, 1997
Bulletin 09 - The Rocky Road
Wednesday 17 September Lhasa to Xigaze 255 kms
Although short in distance, this is tough day. Down the Lhasa valley to the Yarlung Tsang-Po, Tibet's great river which we cross and turn off to the west.
From here to the Nepalese border the road is almost entirely dirt or gravel and is often in poor condition. There is the long climb to the Kamba La (15,600 ft) at the top is a splendid panorama of the stunning scorpion-shaped turquoise lake of Yamdrok Tso and the peaks along Tibet's southern border. The road drops down to the Yamrock Tso and follows the shore before climbing to the Karo La (16,300 ft) passing close to a magnificent hanging glacier. A broad flat valley brings us to Gyangze an attractive town dominated by a fortress captured and destroyed by the British during their incursion into Tibet. From Gyangze to Xigaze (12,600 ft), Tibet's second largest town and site of the Tashillunpo Monastry one of the centres of Buddhism.
Information received from section to Xigaze
The section following the rest day in Lhasa may have been short but it has been tough and the majority of the previously unpenalised runners have now picked up penalties. Just seven cars now remain 'clean', three of these being entered in the four-wheel drive class...
Despite the conditions, the brief report we have received suggests that no more cars have retired. In fact, one that was reported as having retired - Gerry Acher's 1932 Aston Martin (No 4) is now back in the hunt after replacing a damaged magneto.
One of the two Buicks, the Brooks '59 Straight 8 (No 22) is now definitely posted as retired with a blown engine, but its sister car (No 25) is still running, albeit with a large tally of penalties, hopeful of reaching Katmandhu where proper repairs can be made to the suspension..
Results from TC JJ Shigatse (part 1)
Results from TC JJ - Shigatse (part 2)