Dakar 2012

Route: Dakar


dakar 2012

As the condor (rather than the crow) flies, almost 5,000 kilometres separate Mar del Plata from Lima. In 2012, the Dakar will be staging a pan-American adventure of more than 9,000 kilometres in total. Unlike previous year’s loops, the route will transport the rally from the shores of the Atlantic Ocean to those of the Pacific, enabling its competitors to discover new lands and another aspect of South America. The scale of this challenge has also led to a change in the race’s format, which will include 14 days of racing in 2012. Constantly guided by the Andes Mountain range, the drivers and riders will be crossing the Atacama, and will experience in particular the diversity of the dunes as they head into Peru.


dakar 2011

Argentina: heading for the hills

Grand Start + 5 stages

The competitors will be getting to the heart of the sporting matter on 1st January, after the starting ceremony at Mar del Plata. Used to journeying through Argentina, the riders, drivers and crews will this time be making a bee-line for the Andes Mountains. Only a few familiar landscapes as well as some first-rate sections, including dunes and canyons, have been selected for the Argentine part of the programme in 2012.

dakar 12 km

Chile: en route for the Atacama

5 stages + 1 rest day

The rally will enter Chile with a spot of climbing. After having travelled over the Andes, the rally will then start to follow the range to its tip, working their way up between the mountains and ocean. During this journey northwards, the Dakar will be delving in to the heart of the Atacama Desert, where navigational skill is just as important as the ability to tame the dunes.

Peru: another face of the desert

4 stages + finish

Au niveau de la mer, le passage de la frontière est cette-fois-ci indolore, mais le contraste est bien réel. Avant de rejoindre Lima, les plus anciens du rallye peuvent se préparer à réviser leurs classiques. Les secteurs de dunes péruviens peuvent paraître interminables, sauf à ceux qui maîtrisent le mauritanien. Là où la diversité des territoires et des modes de vie s’impose comme évidente, celle des sables exigera un apprentissage délicat.

Bikes: everyone on a 450cc

The reform which began two years ago has reached its conclusion. All the bikes enrolled on the Dakar 2012 will be limited to an engine size of 450cc. In 2010 and 2011, the compulsory switchover to 450cc for the elite riders led to a more intense battle between the constructors: 4 different constructors were represented in the final Top 10 of the last edition.

© ÓrbitanewsSport 2011