As the early morning mist cleared around the Alentejo town of Almodovar in Portugal, the early arrivals for the Southern area 4 x 4 Plus Championships were walking the course, inspecting rock outcrops, vertical drops, water traps and serious undulations.
Anyone watching were left in no doubt about the severity of the course. Portugal's 2010 National Champion, Team Talho Penelense, looked to have the edge with his four-wheel-steering making easy work of the tight turning on the vertical cliff sections but a nasty rock proved his undoing. The team limped through the remainder of the first course with the back axle tied up and kicking the rear wheel into position. Repairs done they finished second overall with 18 points.
Despite the difficulty only one vehicle went over and one retired after getting stuck, the JCB which retrieved him. Well deserved winners on the day were Speed Team from Portimao with 12 points.