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Everything You Need to Know About the 2014 Dakar Rally

From 1979 till 2008, the Dakar was an off-road race based on production vehicles from Paris or other european cities to Dakar, Senegal. In 2009 it moved to South America, but the original name Dakar remained.  The race, unlike North American off-road races, is a multiple day rally made up of a combination of race stages, special stages and transit stages.  Outside technical assistance is prohibited and restricted to only competitors helping each other out. Each of the days stages needs to be completed in order to be part of the race.

The Dakar starts January 4th with a podium introduction of all competitors. Competitive racing starts on the 5th until the 18th of January 2014. There is one rest day on Saturday the 11th of January, giving all teams a chance to catch up on much needed rest and work on vehicle problems.

The total distance of the Dakar Rally is 5,824 miles/9,372km. Of that total distance, 3,431miles/5,522km are driven off-road in ‘Special Stages’ while 2,393miles/3,852km are uncompetitively driven on public roads where regular traffic laws are observed and speeding gets you penalized.

The race starts in Rosario, Argentina, transitions through Bolivia (Bikes only) and ends up in Valparaíso, Chile just 200miles/124km outside of the capital city of Santiago.

There is a total of approximately 436 vehicles from 53 nations in 4 general categories. 72 Trucks, 150 cars, 40 quads and 174 bikes.


Robby Gordon, #305 based out of Orange, CA, has raced the Dakar seven times. His best effort was a third overall  in 2009. He archived two stage wins in 2013 and finished 14th. He is the favorite among all American efforts. This year, he is debuting a new vehicle that is based on his recently created Stadium Super Trucks Series (SST); The Gordini.

BJ Baldwin, #318 based out of Las Vegas, NV, raced the Dakar one time prior as Robbies team mate  in 2008 and finished a respectable seventh overall and 1st in class. He is also the current SCORE Trophy Truck champion (back-to-back) and just won the legendary Baja 1000, ironmanning it in just over eighteen hours. He may be new to Dakar but is a very established off-road racer. He will drive the same Jeffries built platform car that debut in 2013 with Al Attayah and Carlos Sainz.

Peter Hajas, #346 based out of Chicago, IL, has never competed in the Dakar. He is an established SCORE Class10 racer and champion of the 2013 “SCORE Dakar Challenge”. His weapon of choice will be a new Brenthal Industries build Dakar vehicle.

Mike Johnson, #92 from Minnesota, is also another first time Dakar racer.  He’ll pilot his Honda CRF450 around South America for the first time.  However, Johnson is not unfamiliar to the event. In 2012 he was part of a crew for another race team. His practice includes a recent race in Abu Dhabi and for this Dakar his primary goal is to finish.


Peter Hardy, #167 From California,  is yet another first timer to Dakar but a seasoned Baja bike racer. He came to the event in 2012 to get a better understanding of what it may take to suceed.

Kevin Muggleton #186 is an American residing in the UK. Last years Dakar proved to be devastating for Kevin as he crashed out after two days and suffered severe back and rib injuries after falling off his bike. Different from most people, that didn’t scare him away but instead only made him desore to come back stronger.

Click here to view Race-Dezert.com’s El Martillo Racing Dakar Vehicle Feature.

Native Canadian #348 Matt Campbell is heading to the Dakar from of Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. The El Martillo Race Team consists of Americans, Canadians and Mexicans. Matt races in the local Baja Sur off-road circuit and comes in with a brand new Jimco built Dodge Durango. Jimco is an authority car manufacturer for Desert and Dakar cars globally.


In the US the Dakar will be shown daily starting January 6th on NBC Sport Network. Globally the race will be broadcasted in 190 countries on 70 TV channels with an estimated 1 billion viewers.  Check your local listing.

Mon 1/6 – 5:00pm-5:30pm NBC SPORTS
Tue 1/7 – 5:00pm-5:30pm NBC SPORTS
Wed 1/8 – 5:00pm-5:30pm NBC SPORTS
Thu 1/9 – 5:00pm-5:30pm NBC SPORTS
Fri 1/10 – 5:00pm-5:30pm NBC SPORTS
Sat 1/11 – 5:30pm-6:00pm NBC SPORTS
Sun 1/12 – 10:00pm-10:30pm NBC SPORTS
Mon 1/13 – 6:30pm-7:00pm NBC SPORTS
Tue 1/14 – 5:00pm-5:30pm NBC SPORTS
Wed 1/15 – 5:00pm-5:30pm NBC SPORTS
Thu 1/16 – 5:00pm-5:30pm NBC

*All times EST

Dakar.com – Official website of the Dakar Rally
www.race-dezert.com – Daily summaries of American and top overall efforts. Strong forum community.
PlanetRobby.com – Robby Gordon

Dakar Social Media

Toyo Tires Social Media

Brenthel Industries Social Media

Planet Robby Social Media

BJ Baldwin Social Media

1st time Dakar racers from Minneapolis, Minnesota; Peter Hajas & co-driver Kevin "Farmer" Selchow are on top of the world right now. Currently it's below zero in Minn. Baja proven, Pete and Kevin are hot now, they will show us what they are made of !