New sands for Dakar!


ANEW ERA IS SET TO START with the rig­or­ous Dakar Rally poised to make its way to the Mid­dle Eastern deserts start­ing 2020. The or­gan­is­ers of the Dakar Rally, Amaury Sport Or­gan­i­sa­tion, have signed a five-year con­tract with Saudi Ara­bia.

The 2019 Dakar Rally was the first of its kind, be­ing en­tirely run in Peru, since coun­tries like Chile, Ecuador and Bo­livia failed the agree­ment with the or­gan­is­ers. Amaury Sport Or­gan­i­sa­tion did, how­ever, have an op­tion of one other coun­try in South Amer­ica, but was ul­ti­mately forced to move their gru­elling cam­paign to the Mid­dle East, due to the eco­nomic in­sta­bil­ity in South Amer­ica.

The first sea­son in the Mid­dle East will com­mence in Jan­uary in Riyadh, the cap­i­tal of Saudi Ara­bia. An ad­van­tage for the or­gan­is­ers and par­tic­i­pants was that Saudi Ara­bia has an abun­dance of deserts, 1.4 mil­lion square miles of it to be pre­cise, enough to em­u­late the ones in Peru. The scorch­ing heat and vast and un­pre­dictable sandy trails, along with the dunes dot­ting the Asir moun­tain ranges lo­cated in south­west­ern Saudi Ara­bia will make sure the Dakar rally re­tains its ti­tle of the tough­est mo­tor­sport event in the world. ⌧

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