Apart from the Dakar’s three host countries, which represent a quarter of the rally’s population, new flags will appear on some vehicles for the first time. The challenge of the Dakar continues to attract drivers from throughout the world and Mongolians will attentively follow the performance of two of its drivers.
The riders will compete in the 3-country South American rally starting from Peru, then on to Argentina and Chile. The terrain covers some of the world's most stunning deserts; it is both a motor race and an orienteering challenge.
Crossing the great Andes mountain range at altitudes of up to 4500 meters, the drivers also have to navigate big sand dunes, rivers and rocky passes. A high level of technical skill and stamina are required by the participants to be able to complete the 15-day race which covers 8,500 kilometers.
The original Paris-Dakar rally in 1979 took place in Europe and North Africa, but since 2009 has been moved to South America. Bikes, quads, cars and trucks from more than 50 nations join the world's most famous and challenging rally. Drivers may be professionals or amateurs, but motorcycle regulations nowadays limit the engine capacity to 450cc in an attempt to level the field and improve safety. KTM Tour Mongolia are supporting KTM in the motorbike section and 'Kamaz Master Team' trucks; these Dakar winners are what we use in Mongolia for our tours.