Dakar 2014 – Full Race Calendar and Features

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The 2014 Dakar Rally is about to begin, with the 1st stage commencing next January 5th.

This year’s edition will cover Bolivia’s territory for the first time and will have relevant differences in stage’s organization.

Quoting www.Dakar.com

five special stages have been marked out on completely separate routes, with motorcycles and quad bikes on one hand and cars and trucks on the other. Overall, the ‘separation’ includes around 2,000 kilometres of timed sections, covering more than 40% of the distance

In sporting terms, this has the double advantage of taking motorcycle and quad riders onto more technical and narrower tracks during some stages, while enabling the leaders of the car race to ‘hit the trail’ without using the tracks left by the two-wheelers.

This is also a decisive advantage in terms of safety, as separating the routes eliminates all situations requiring careful overtaking. The benefit is even greater given that the stages in question are essentially in the first part of the rally, when there are many vehicles on the track.”

The full stage calendar is the following:

DATE START FINISH
05-01-2014 Rosario San Luis
06-01-2014 San Luis San Rafael
07-01-2014 San Rafael San Juan
08-01-2014 San Juan Chilecito
09-01-2014 Chilecito Tucumán
10-01-2014 Tucumán Salta
11-01-2014 Rest day
12-01-2014 Salta Salta/Uyuni
13-01-2014 Salta/Uyuni Calama
14-01-2014 Calama Iquique
15-01-2014 Iquique Antofagasta
16-01-2014 Antofagasta El Salvador
17-01-2014 El Salvador La Serena
18-01-2014 La Serena Valparaíso

Stéphane Peterhansel (winner of last year’s edition), Nasser-al-Attiyah, and Nani Roma (4th in 2013) – the three leaders of the X-Raid team – are all strong candidates to win the 2014 Dakar.  They will be again on the wheels of Mini.

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Peterhansel has an amazing record of 11 Dakar Rally wins in 21 participations, the first 6 on Bikes and the other 5 on cars. So this year he can match his bike and cars wins!

Other strong contestants are Giniel de Villiers (Toyota, last year’s runner-up) and Carlos Sainz (Buggy), as well as Robby Gordon (Hummer).

Portuguese driver Carlos Sousa – 6th last year – will bear number 306 driving for Team Great Wall and should be again within Top 10 as he already did 9 times. His best place was 4th in the 2003 edition held in the African desert.

On Bikes – Frenchman and winner of last year edition – Cyril Despres (Yahama) – , Spaniard Marc Coma (KTM), Portuguese Rúben Faria (KTM, last year’s runner-up) and Chilean Francisco ‘Chaleco’ Lopez (KTM, 3rd in 2013) are the favourites. Despres has won the Rally 5 times and finished other 5 times in a podium place (4 of them as runner-up).

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