Team HRC en route to the Dakar 2016

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The countdown to the start of the Dakar 2016 continues with the riders and technical staff of Team HRC having now made the journey to South America. Over the coming days, the team will focus on the final preparations for the bikes with the world’s toughest race due to get underway in just a few days time.

This will be Team HRC’s fourth participation in the Rally Dakar, after a twenty-three year absence. The team is currently in Buenos Aires, adjusting to the summer temperatures and the change of time zone in the Southern hemisphere.

After flying out to the Argentine capital and taking a brief rest, the next task will be to prepare the vehicles for the first encounter with race organizers scheduled for 09:00 on this Thursday 31st, the last day of 2015.

Paulo Gonçalves, runner-up in the 2015 edition of the Rally Dakar, will be the first Team HRC rider to undergo scrutiny at the rally offices in Tecnopolis Park, to check that all race registration details are in order. Subsequently, all other riders, mechanics and machines will be subjected to the official scrutineering before the Honda CRF450 RALLY gets the final seal of approval to take part in Rally Dakar 2016.

In addition to Paulo Gonçalves, the rest of the team, made up of Joan Barreda, Michael Metge, Paolo Ceci and Ricky Brabec will also have to make it through the technical and administrative checks prior to taking the Buenos Aires starting ramp on January 2.

Team HRC Riders

#2 - Paulo Gonçalves - Portugal
#6 - Joan Barreda - Spain
#19 - Michael Metge - France
#32 - Paolo Ceci - Italy
#48 - Ricky Brabec - United States

Aside from the riders, the whole of Team HRC’s technical entourage of twenty-five people will have to attend the ASO offices in Tecnopolis Park register for the 38th edition of the planet’s longest and most gruelling rally.

Honda South America Rally Team, who will also be using the new Honda CRF450 RALLY bikes, will likewise be present for scrutineering on December 31 in a slot one hour before Team HRC.

Honda South America Rally Team riders

#22 - Javier Pizzolito - Argentina
#26 - Jean Azevedo - Brazil
#47 - Kevin Benavides - Argentina
#61 - Adrien Metge - France

The Dakar Rally 2016 sets off on 2nd January 2016 from Tecnopolis Park. Riders will head first to Rosario, where they will face an 11 kilometre curtain-raiser around Baradero. This prologue will establish the starting order of the main event which kicks off on January 3 from Rosario.