'Dakars' take place year after year but always differ. The 34th edition of this fantastic off-road rally which started on 1 January from Mar del Plata, in Argentina, has added a country to its chart. Indeed, Peru is going to contribute its beautiful but also ensnaring dunes to the talent of the competitors, bringing to 27 the number of countries crossed by the rally since its creation in 1978.
The figures characterising this unparalleled event really do make your mind whirl: 742 competitors taking part in the race, 980 competitors participating as members of assistance teams, TV broadcasting in 190 countries, 11 helicopters, 8,373 km including 4,191 km of timed 'specials' for cars... This incredible armada brings together 50 different nationalities and will end in Lima after 14 days of an intense race after crossing the Andes cordillera at more than 4,700 metres altitude.
Obviously Motul could not be absent from such an adventure for man and machines, as the technical partner of several teams. Among them, Neo Raid Rally Team is one of the four Polish teams to take part in the rally, with its BMW X5CC entrusted to the duo Piotr Beaupre and Jacek Lisicki, and a Mercedes 1935 AK lorry in the hands of Michel and Julien Saumet.
At the end of the second day, MD Rallye sport, another team supported technically by Motul, bagged a fine first place in the overall standings of two-wheel drive vehicles with the Optimus buggy with a Nissan engine driven by the two Pascals, Thomasse and Larroque.
For their part, the two VDJ200 Land Cruisers of team Toyota Auto Body, driven by Jun Mitsuhashi/Alain Guehennec and Masahito Terada/Kousuke Tabaka, secured respectively second and third places in the T2 standings, reserved for production cars. Last, regarding motorcycles, Thierry Bethys' Yamaha TB Racing kept its 42nd place out of 180 contenders.
Good luck for the rest of the race!