Dakar 2016: Ready for the curtain-raiser…

b_600_0_16777215_00_images_00-DAKAR_2016_vooraf_20141119DK0012.jpg

On 18th November, the presence of the main players on the Dakar 2016 is expected in Paris, to attend the detailed presentation of the route and list of competitors. Now on the other side of the fence, Marc Coma will welcome the other title holders (Al Attiyah in the car category, Sonik in the quad category and Mardeev in the truck race), but also outstanding debutants such as Sebastien Loeb or Mikko Hirvonen…

The middle of November will already witness one of the high points of the Dakar! The traditional route presentation conference is at the very least when speculation starts regarding the pretenders for the title and when the official list of competitors and their race numbers are discovered, whilst the European riders and drivers are busying themselves with their final preparations before loading their vehicles for the crossing at the port of Le Havre.

There will be many questions and comments in the wings of the Espace Pierre Cardin centre once Etienne Lavigne, for the first time accompanied by Marc Coma as sporting director, will have set out the fine details of the 2016 edition. Nasser Al Attiyah, the title holder in the car race, could list his collection of triumphs obtained during the season as an initial intimidation to his rivals in January, whether former winners like Stéphane Peterhansel and “Nani” Roma or prestigious newcomers such as Sebastien Loeb and Mikko Hirvonen.

In the bike category, the main issue will be identifying the successors of Marc Coma, whether from the Iberian clan, like Joan Barreda, Jordi Viladoms, Paolo Gonçalves and Helder Rodrigues, or from among the group of French riders, led by Olivier Pain. On two wheels, young ambitious riders from the ranks of endurance racing, such as world champions Pierre-Alexandre Renet, Antoine Meo or Ivan Cervantes, will also be present to test the water. However, until they get down to the nitty gritty in January, it is all just talk!

 The riders and drivers expected in Paris on 18/11:

Cars:
Nasser Al-Attiyah, “Nani” Roma, Mikko Hirvonen (Mini), Stéphane Peterhansel, Sébastien Loeb (Peugeot), Yazeed Alrahji (Toyota), Christian Lavieille (Renault Duster)…

Bikes: Joan Barreda, Paolo Gonçalves (Honda), Jordi Viladoms, Laia Sanz, Olivier Pain, Antoine Meo, Ivan Cervantes (KTM), Helder Rodrigues (Yamaha), Pierre-Alexandre Renet (Husqvarna)… 

Quads: Rafal Sonik, Marcos Patronelli, Alejandro Patronelli (Yamaha)…

Trucks: Ayrat Mardeev, Eduard Nikolaev (Kamaz), Gerard De Rooy, Ales Loprais (Iveco)…