- Written by webmin
The 2011 Personal Dakar Argentina-Chile Rally begins Saturday, with the ceremonial start in Buenos Aires; it will finish in Victoria, Argentina, on the first night. Actual timed racing begins on Sunday, with the first day of racing covering 566 km from Victoria to Cordoba. This the 32nd edition of the rally, taking place in Argentina and Chile for the third straight year; it will conclude on January 16th after navigating over 9,500 km of some of the roughest terrain any vehicle can navigate.
Entry classes for racing include just about everything on two or four wheels; motorcycles, quads, trucks and cars can join the mayhem. Over 425 entrants are expected in this year’s rally. Last year’s winner in the quad category, South American Marcos Patronelli, had a serious accident while testing in November and broke both fibulas, but has not yet withdrawn from the race. He thinks his odds are better than 50/50 that he will compete anyway.
KTM has dominated the Elite motorcycle class for the last five years with podium finishes and wins being traded by Red Bull’s Cyril Despres and Repsol’s Marc Coma; however, this year the Elite classification is limited to 450cc, making the racing even more competitive for other riders and entries from Aprilia, BMW, Honda and Yamaha.
Other notable rally racers will include NASCAR’s Robby Gordon, entering for the seventh time in a Hummer in one truck class, and six-time winner Vladimir Chagin in another with his Red Bull/Kamaz truck. You can follow the daily results on the official Dakar website or check your local TV listings. There will be over 50 channels across the globe that will be covering all or portions of the event. Updated rally information is also available on Facebook and Twitter.