BFGoodrich® ready for the 2018 Dakar
With just six weeks to go until the 40th edition of the Dakar kicks off in Lima, Peru, on January 6, 2018, the event’s director Etienne Lavigne revealed details of the upcoming itinerary which will feature a high proportion of sand dunes in Peru over the first few days.
En route to the finish in Cordoba, Argentina, the 515 competitors (337 vehicles) face a hike of almost 9,000 kilometres through Peru, Bolivia and Argentina, including 4,500km of against-the-clock action.
The entry list features the event’s usual blend of stars and rookies, while BFGoodrich®’s range of tires for the annual marathon includes the brand new BFGoodrich® All Terrain T/A KDR2+.
Spearheading the field of favourites will be Stéphane Peterhansel who has won the Dakar no fewer than 13 times since his first participation three decades ago. The Frenchman will be fronting the Peugeot squad which is contesting the rally for one last time after monopolising the podium in January 2017 with Peterhansel, Sébastien Loeb and Cyril Despres.
In addition to competition from his own team-mates, last year’s winner faces opposition from Toyota Hilux drivers like Nasser Al-Attiyah who has gone unbeaten in the discipline since retiring on Day 3 of the 2017 Dakar. The 2014 victor Nani Roma returns for Team X-Raid, joined by team-mates Mikko Hirvonen and American newcomer Bryce Menzies who promise to be competitive in the new Mini.
BFGoodrich® will also be supporting Christian Lavieille who is contesting the event for the 15th time, as well as Spaniards Jesús Calleja, Rubén Gracia and Cristina Gutiérrez. The latter is one of this year’s 10 lady entrants. A special mention, too, for rookies Markus Walcher and his co-driver Tobias Henschel who won the GoodProject Dakar Edition competition.
The European-prepared vehicles will be scrutineered on Friday, November 24, in Le Havre, France, before being shipped out to Peru via the Panama Canal.