To do list of a team manager

My stories / 28. January 2021

Daniela Ozanová

For Dada, the first lady of the Slovnaft Rally Dakar team, in order to handle all that was necessary, she had to go full speed as well. She was mainly in charge of administration and communication with the organization, technical and administrative verifications. Nothing is easy at world races:

“Putting 3,000 people on one spot means that you really have to run all day.”

A useful innovation was the online application, which announced the results and start times. Although she says she might not have had as much physical strength to help the team pack the tent, being biker herself she knew what the racer needed before the ride. She also brought experience from previous races. Even though those races were shorter, the procedures remain similar:

“The verification processes, the morning start and the transfers are the same.”

Good relations above all

Dada often encountered a language barrier when communicating with the staff, as the organization is French:

“English is not such a win,” she admits.

Although personal contacts were limited this year due to the pandemic, she had no problem getting the latest information from acquaintances on the spot. She also maintains good relations with members of other teams in private, she knows many of them thanks to her motorcycle wandering. Would she try Dakar on her own?

“Sure, one always feels like trying …” the manager admits, but she is stopped by the very first problem: finances.

Money is only a means to access the rally, in the end the races themselves are all about prestige:

“Just the fact that you reach the finish line is a great success.”

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