There is no other motor race like it on earth – the Dakar Rally takes drivers across 9,000km of the South American continent, through Chile, Bolivia and Argentina – the MINI ALL4 Racing is back again in 2015 to defend its Dakar Rally crown.
With several new and reinstated stages, the Dakar Rally is the ultimate challenge for those taking part. From merciless gravel sections to the breathtaking heights of the Andes, and from the sweltering heat of the Atacama Desert to the tricky soft sand dunes, competitors are often heading into the unknown, facing unforeseen obstacles.
The Dakar Rally is the ultimate orienteering challenge and endurance test. Drivers lose (on average) an enormous 65 litres of sweat and 66,300 calories during the entire race*. The key to a team’s success is their stamina and experience, with no driver under the age of 35 ever having won the race. In fact, over half of those who enter don’t finish the race.
For 2015, the world’s toughest race is going back to its origins, opening up the exhausting marathon stage to all classes for the first time since the rally moved to South America in 2009. This gruelling leg of the race, which takes place in Bolivia, is two whole race days where competitors are left to fend for themselves. The participants cannot call upon their support teams during this time and have to carry out any repairs and maintenance work to the cars themselves.
The participating pairs, drivers and their co-drivers, have a lot of unique skills the Rally puts to the test. Unlike standard rallying, the crews in the Dakar Rally don’t know the route until the night before when the co-driver is given his Roadbook. The Roadbook is the key to the race with the route, dangers highlighted and the different terrains the car must negotiate included.
Dakar legends, Nani Roma and his experienced co-driver Michel Périn, a four-time Dakar winner himself, are aiming to defend their crowns as the ‘Kings of Dakar’ in the black and green MINI ALL4 Racing car.
Nani Roma said: “The Dakar Rally is the most physically and mentally challenging rally in the world. After doing it 18 times it runs through my blood. Winning the 2014 Dakar Rally in the MINI ALL4 Racing was very special to me because it came exactly ten years after my first Dakar victory,” says Roma who also won the 2004 Dakar Rally on a motorcycle.
“The MINI ALL4 Racing has been strong from start to finish. It is the way we know the MINI to be: powerful, reliable and fast. It has been a key factor in making my most recent Dakar victory possible. It will be a pleasure to be back in the MINI as I am looking forward to the 2015 Dakar Rally – ready to defend my title.”