Having won the Dakar Rally 12 times, Stéphane Peterhansel really doesn’t deserve this. No one does. Except, perhaps, the man who designed this ridiculous car in the first place.

How to get in to the Peugeot 2008 DKR? No, no. I know how to open the door. I mean, how to get in?

Embarrassingly, head-first fails. Feet-first is worse. I decide to fold myself in two and slide in backwards.

Mr Dakar’s first sight of me must have been a worry; any hint of sunlight is blocked as I shove myself, arse-first, towards him, tumbling into the seat.

He smiles. I suspect he’s seen this all before. I’m too exhausted to talk. He laughs.

Breath back, I’m ready for the 9.65km (or 5.99 miles) stretching out before us.

This is Le Creusot, just south of Dijon, France. This is where the 2008 DKR was first tested, pounded over these very rocks to see what fell off. In its first incarnation, pretty much everything fell off. The 2015 car was shocking.