The Dakar Rally: First Time in Peru

Aracari’s Weekly Insight

The Question:

Which world-renowned rally races its way into Peru for the first time today?

The Answer:

Having already sped through Argentina and Chile, the Dakar rally today enters the third and final country on the route; Peru.

Day 11 of the 2012 edition sees drivers negotiate their way from Arica on the Peru-Chile border through the sparse and dramatic landscapes of Peru’s southern Andes, all the way to the city of Arequipa.

Following this, on the final three days, competitors will speed through the sand dunes of Peru’s southern desert, past Nazca and Ica, before finally arriving in the capital city of Lima.

Route of the Dakar 2012 edition

Beginning in 1978, The Dakar was originally a race from Paris, France, to Dakar in Senegal, though it had to be relocated after the 2008 edition was cancelled because of political instability and security problems. This is the fourth year that the rally has been held in South America, and the event is set to stay here indefinitely.

The rally, a test of endurance that is considered to be perhaps the world’s most authentic motorsports event, entails drivers of four different types of off-road vehicle – namely cars, truck, motorcycles, and quad bikes – negotiate  their way through rough and extreme terrain, making South America an excellent venue.

Above: Racers on Day 10 of the 2012 Dakar

Having only passed through Argentina and Chile over the last 3 years, this is the first year that the event will travel to Peru. The competition kicked off in Buenos Aires on the 1st of January and lasts for a total of 14 days, covering a staggering total of 5,281 miles, with competitors arriving in Lima on the 15th of January for the winning ceremony.

You can follow the final days of action on the official Dakar website.