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Dakar 2014: The Figures

  Posted at 08:15:00 AM
  File under  Dakar Race Statistics
  Author: Mike Werner
  Location: Normandy, France

Dakar logo
The 2014 edition of the mythical and notorious Dakar Open link in a new window motorcycle rally is about to start. The Dakar, though still being held in South America and not in Africa where it had started, keeps making people dream. There are so many bikers who want to ride the Dakar but are unable because of the extreme high cost associated with riding a motorcycle for two weeks in some of the harshest conditions known to mankind. So they dream....

Before the race starts today (Sunday) let's have a look at what the Dakar represents statistics-wise.

There are 400 competitors in all categories (70 trucks, 147 cars, 174 motorcycles and 40 quads). (Only) 9 of them are female. The youngest competitor is 18 years old and it's the Argentian Jeremias Gonzales Ferioli riding a quad. The oldest is Yoshimasa Sugawara, and he's Japanese, drives truck and is 72 years old. 50 nationalities will be competing in the race. 89 competitors are racing for the first time.

It costs a motorcycle competitor €14,800 to enter the race (that's for the registration fee, not counting support, bike, travel, hotel, etc which brings the total to around €75,000). Cars pay €25,000 while trucks pay €37,000.

Dakar 2013 Cyril Despres
Cyril Despres      © Maragni M. KTM Images

Frenchman Stephane Peterhansel holds the most victories in the Dakar; 6 in the motorcycle category, 5 in the car category. Russian Vladimir Chagin holds the most victories in a single category: trucks. The current title holder for motorcycles is Frenchman Cyril Despres who won last year on a KTM but this year is riding a Yamaha.

Since 1978 when the Dakar started, they will have been in 28 countries (Bolivia is the 28th, and it's the first time).

There are 57 doctors in the Dakar team, an organizer's team using 210 vehicles (40 cars, 11 helicopters, 55 trucks and 5 buses). The support team is consists of 1,077 people using 388 vehicles. Security is provided by 22,000 people during the race, often local police and security firms.

Everyday there are some 3,000 people in the bivouacs, i.e. the size of a big town, with 80,000 meals served during that time. During the 2 weeks, the motorcycle competitors must ride 8,739 kilometers of which 5,220 kilometers are timed.

4.6 MILLION spectators will be watching the race alongside the roads of Argentina, Bolivia and Chile. That's not counting the billion or so TV spectators.

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