Dakar Rally 2023 – Preview • Whole Motorbike


Held within the Center East for the fourth consecutive 12 months, the legendary Dakar Rally celebrates its forty fifth version in 2023. Presenting an enormous problem to all riders proper from day one, the occasion might be held over 14 full levels of racing with opponents protecting a complete distance of over 8,500 grueling kilometers alongside the way in which. Round 4,700 of these kilometers might be raced in opposition to the clock within the 14 timed specials and single prologue qualifier, which make up the occasion. Following the primary eight full levels, riders will take pleasure in a well-earned relaxation day in Riyadh earlier than taking up the ultimate six levels resulting in the rally end at Dammam on January 15.

Collaborating in his ninth Dakar Rally, Matthias Walkner arrives in Saudi Arabia after a 12 months spent recovering from surgical procedure to his shoulder. Nevertheless, now totally match and motivated to impress on the opening spherical of the FIM World Rally-Raid Championship, the 36-year-old Austrian has his sights set on claiming a second profession win on the iconic occasion.

Matthias Walkner: “Lastly the race we plan all 12 months for has arrived. We practice and take a look at all 12 months for the Dakar, however now the coaching is finished and it’s time to concentrate on the following two weeks of racing. I’m wanting ahead to what might be my ninth Dakar, and whereas expertise counts for lots, no two occasions are the identical and also you by no means know what you’ll face out within the desert. It seems just like the 2023 race might be an attention-grabbing one – it’s tremendous lengthy at 14 levels and a prologue. There are some rule adjustments for us all as effectively – we’ll be dealing with new areas to race by way of, and naturally the staff have made some adjustments to our bike that we haven’t had the possibility to make use of in a race surroundings but. Hopefully every little thing goes to plan, for me I’m feeling match and totally recovered after my shoulder damage, so I can’t wait to get began now.”

Additionally coming into his ninth Dakar, Toby Worth might be seeking to make amends for the navigational subject that noticed him preventing to make up for misplaced time proper from the beginning of the 2022 occasion. Along with his power, endurance, and skill to stay targeted regardless of the situations, Worth is effectively suited to lengthy occasions just like the 14-stage 2023 Dakar and might be aiming to clinch his third motorbike class win for himself and the Crimson Bull KTM staff.

Toby Worth: “I’m actually wanting ahead to getting the 2023 Dakar underway. 2022 wasn’t so type to me – I had good tempo, however after dropping a lot time actually early on, it was a tall ask to claw that again. If something, that solely motivates me much more for this 12 months, so I can’t watch for the race to kick off and we are able to get caught in. The standard aim is presumably much more vital than ever with the occasion being so lengthy this 12 months – keep clean, constant, and be there proper on the finish. All in all, it’s going to be a troublesome one, however let’s be sure it’s a superb one!”

Kevin Benavides is wanting ahead to his second Dakar Rally with Crimson Bull KTM. Spending a variety of the 2022 season testing and growing the newest incarnation of the KTM 450 RALLY alongside the staff, Benavides has additionally proven race-winning pace through the 2022 season, and is now hoping to hold the boldness gained from that into the 2023 Dakar. The 2021 winner is aware of precisely what it takes to come back out on high on the world’s hardest rally-raid.

Kevin Benavides: “It’s been a protracted 12 months of working laborious, testing, and growing the bike with the staff. However we’re right here now in Saudi and I’m so excited to get began. I’ve been ready all 12 months for this second and now it’s arrived. There has additionally been a variety of races by way of the previous 12 months and after some actually promising outcomes, I believe I’m in a superb place by way of preparation and my pace. The race goes to be actually lengthy, in order that preparation might be extra vital than ever. I’m going to take the occasion daily and hopefully be within the battle for the win on the end.”

Following the quick prologue stage on December 31, positions might be determined for day one of many rally, which is able to see riders tackle the 590-kilometer looped stage beginning and ending on the bivouac at Sea Camp. A 368-kilometer timed particular will give riders their first correct style of the desert situations on the 2023 occasion.



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