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What’s new for Dakar 2023: Longer route, time bonuses and extra | Autocar India

Written by Gulati

With a complete of virtually 5,000km in particular phases, the 2023 Dakar Rally will function the longest distance of competitors since 2014.

The 2023 Dakar Rally will run from January 1-15, after a prologue stage on December 31, 2022. For the fourth 12 months working, the occasion can be held solely in Saudi Arabia. Nonetheless, organisers have now prolonged it to 14 Phases for the primary time for the reason that 2018 version that was unfold throughout Peru, Bolivia and Argentina.

Some rule adjustments have been introduced as nicely, together with a brand new time bonus for bike rivals, mirror routes and extra.

  • Dakar 2023 can be held from January 1-15
  • 14 Phases deliberate
  • Choose phases can be break up in two

Longer route

Dakar Rally organisers ASO (Amaury Sport Organisation) say the brand new route that takes rivals from the west to east coast of Saudi Arabia is “70 % new”. Whereas they haven’t revealed precisely how a lot distance can be coated, they’ve said that almost all of the particular phases can be near 450km. In whole, with virtually 5,000km of particular phases, the 2023 Dakar Rally will function the longest distance of competitors since 2014. The liaison sections between the phases can be shorter, with end traces nearer to the bivouacs, which can cut back liaison occasions.

The rally will kick off from the seashores of the Pink Sea on January 1 and conclude on the sands of the Arabian Gulf in Dammam on January 15. A complete of three days can be spent within the Empty Quarter – a desert bigger than France, extending over your complete south-eastern area of the Arabian Peninsula. Opponents should face the added problem of a marathon stage right here, the place they received’t have any exterior help from their groups in a single day.

Registrations will stay open till October 31.

Digital roadbooks for everybody

Goodbye to paper roadbooks. Over the previous few years, Dakar organisers have been introducing digital roadbooks, beginning with the automobile, SSV, truck and T3 classes in 2021, and later elite riders within the bike and quad classes in 2022. For 2023, all automobiles throughout all classes can be geared up with this extra superior navigational software.

Mirror route

Some phases will function a mirror route, which implies the route can be break up into two with completely different waypoints to seek out relying on which roadbook every competitor is handed. The routes can be assigned randomly, discouraging these tempted to easily comply with contributors forward of them. Individuals should maintain navigation on high of their precedence or they might threat lacking waypoints and incurring hefty penalties.

Time bonus for bike riders

Successful a stage within the Dakar has usually been perceived as an obstacle for these competing within the bikes class as a result of it means they need to open the stage the following day and basically clear the route for these behind. This can lead to main time misplaced, and consequently, some riders have usually opted to voluntarily forego successful a stage.

Organisers have now introduced a time bonus to those that open the stage within the bike class. The precise intricacies of how a lot time compensation needs to be awarded are nonetheless being labored out.

New class for Dakar Traditional

The Dakar Traditional class, for automobiles made earlier than 2000, may also proceed to be a part of the rally. Like all the time, rivals on this class may have their very own devoted route. The 2023 Dakar Traditional route will function 13 phases, two of which can be marathon phases. Organisers have additionally added a brand new ‘Common Pace’ class for much less highly effective automobiles.

Sam Sunderland and Nasser Al-Attiyah received the Dakar Rally this 12 months within the bike and automobile classes. Representing the Indian contingent, each Hero MotoSports riders completed within the high 20. Harith Noah had retired on Stage 10, however was allowed to return beneath the expertise class.

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Gulati