A Walk Down the Dakar Rally Memory Lane
© Marcelo Maragni/Red Bull Content Pool
We go back in time to re-visit some of the Dakar rally’s unforgettable races.
The Dakar rally is one of motorsports most grueling challenges. Considered to be one of the world’s toughest races, it has made for many unforgettable moments and extraordinary adventures. Some that you even might not know about. Let’s go over some of the wildest races that have gone down in Dakar history.
In 1986, Dubbed as the toughest Dakar ever, the Dakar rally spanned across two continents. Starting from Paris in France, to Algeria and stretching all the way down to Dakar, the capital city of Senegal. After a total of 15,000 km, less than a quarter of the competitors were able to cross the finish line. A statistic that had never occurred again in Dakar history.
In 2005, the Dakar rally hosted the largest edition of the race with a record number of almost 700 vehicles. Competitors took off from Barcelona, crossed into Morocco and raced down west Africa. It was a shorter distance than the previous edition, but it was challenging as ever. Still, that did not stop Stéphane Peterhansel from claiming his back-to-back win.
In 2014, things got very hot. Argentina, Bolivia and Chile were all on the itinerary for the sixth consecutive Dakar rally set in South America. Aside from all the exotic scenery, temperatures got so high that competitors were forced to take detours just to avoid the ridiculous heat surpassing 50°C. Nevertheless, Nani Roma claimed victory over Stéphane Peterhansel and Nasser Al Attiyah.
In 2019, the Dakar rally gave us a climatic finish to its adventures in South America. The Peruvian desert had raised the bar to become one of the most challenging chapters in recent history. Speed and navigation were both just as important, pressuring both drivers as well as co-drivers to remain alert. Nasser Al Attiyah’s mastery clutched him his third Dakar win and brought Toyota their first ever Dakar title.
With the Dakar rally returning to the Middle East in 2021 we’re expecting more of these legendary adventures and exciting moments from beyond the trails. In the meantime, you can pump up the adrenaline by looking back at the Dakar on Red Bull TV.