|Dakar Rally 2014: The bike and quad categories are full for 2014 edition.|
15 May saw registrations open for the 2014 edition of the Dakar Rally in Argentina, Bolivia and Chile. Less than two months down the line, the bike and quad categories are already full and it is now time to select the candidates who will be taking part in the adventure.
The Dakar organising teams received 300 applications between 15th May and 7th July. This is a figure that is hovering closely around the record set in 2012 which had not been seen since the rally was last held in Africa. It confirms the rally's success on South American soil.
The decision over who will appear on the start line in Rosario next January will be made based on criteria ranging from sporting references, especially in Rally Raid and navigation, through to physical ability and training programmes. The organisers will take particular care to ensure that a maximum level of security and comfort is provided to competitors and they will also endeavour to manage the race format to the best of their ability.
“Above and beyond the front of the race which is reserved for professionals, the Dakar is essentially designed with enthusiasts in mind: those who thrive on open spaces and adventure,” explains David Castera, the event's Sporting Director. “It is, nevertheless, essential to be well-informed and to prepare as thoroughly as possible for this challenge which is still the toughest in the world. This is the criteria we use in our selection process.”
In terms of the number of nationalities, the increasingly international trend continues unabated: as in 2013, 10 different Latin American nationalities could be joining the Dakar's “traditional” riders and quad pilots (French, Italian, Spanish) on the starting line, whereas 53 nationalities were represented at the start in the 2013 edition. Registrations for the car and truck categories, which are already looking to be a high quality line-up, remain open.
2013/07/19 | 16:35 CET | ARTICLE: MR/HS/ASO