Dakar budget

Discussion in 'Racing' started by norm67, Jan 13, 2013.

  1. whitham_wannabe

    whitham_wannabe Long timer

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    Excellent information, thank you for sharing.

    How do these costs compare with the cost to run a car in the event?
    #21
  2. BC61

    BC61 Long timer

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    Take the "supported riders" budget above, multiply by the number of cylinders of the car you want to enter, then if it includes a turbo multiply by 1.25. If the goal is to finnish 10th- 20th multiply by 2; 1st-10th multiply by 4.


    Or you could rent Robby Gordon's 2nd Hummer supported for 1.5 million.
    #22
  3. Moto Benny in MTL

    Moto Benny in MTL Adventurer

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    Actually, the car costs are more like double what you'd spend on a bike. It really depends on the car and your goals. Last year we went with a live-axle car and a mild engine tune (3.0L turbo-diesel w 260 hp and 450 torque), both of which mean lower maintenance. We spoiled ourselves with 2 mechanics instead of 1 and we spent $125K to do the rally. In the lead up to that first attempt, we also did the Tuareg Rally twice (25K each time w similar support) and did 1 week of testing in morocco (15K). These costs are what you'd spend if your goal was to finish or perhaps touch the top 40.

    To get into the top 30 you really need an independent suspension car, which then means 2-3 mechanics and not 1-2. You don't really need much more power, but it's nice to have, so that will use up other parts quicker (brakes, clutch, maybe a tranny). So this will be a $150K effort more or less.

    The cost effective way to do it in a car is to enter the production class in a hilux or land cruiser. These are 10-20% slower but very tough and end up costing less to keep going for the race. This approach, with a sharp budget would mean $75-100K for the race itself.

    None of these costs include the car. The production route is about 80K euros. Our live axle Desert Warrior with Reiger suspension and really well prepared was 105K euros. Our new car (that blew its engine on stage 2) was 175K euros.

    After completing a Dakar, the good thing about a purpose built car like a desert warrior is that you can sell it for 80-85K euros, whereas a production based car will lose at least half its value.

    Hope that helps.

    If you have the riding skill, the fitness and the absolute confidence that you'll keep a level head and not get killed, do it on a bike! Current attrition stats are 1/200 riders - scary. 0.5% chance of being killed. Not injured - killed.

    If you have 3 kids, are a good but not great rider, are in good but not great shape, and can afford it, do it in a car. It's 80% as much fun and 80% less painful! (but 100% more expensive...) that was my math and you only live once so f*ck it.
    #23
  4. norm67

    norm67 Adventurer

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    "If you have 3 kids, are a good but not great rider, are in good but not great shape, and can afford it, do it in a car. It's 80% as much fun and 80% less painful! (but 100% more expensive...) that was my math and you only live once so f*ck it. "


    PRICELESS!!!!:clap<!-- / message -->
    #24
  5. KustomizingKid

    KustomizingKid Been here awhile

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    I must just come from a different world than some of these posters... I can't even fathom spending as much as the house I grew up in on one race.
    #25
  6. norm67

    norm67 Adventurer

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    Different people put different values on items that add to their lives.... Who is anyone to judge...
    #26
  7. Moto Benny in MTL

    Moto Benny in MTL Adventurer

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    Hi KK,

    I worried that my transparent approach to explaining the true costs would perhaps elicit this kind of post. I agree that it's crazy amounts of money, but there is so much interest about Dakar on ADVRIDER that I thought I could help shed some light on the true costs.

    One thing to keep in mind is that the race gets such great media exposure that it is actually pretty easy to get a large part of the race sponsored. Look at Patrick Beaule or Pyndon - in Pat's case, he covered 70% of his budget with sponsorship/support. I bet Pyndon did very well as well. So the numbers I'm quoting are the total budget but not the total spend.

    You mention that it's one race, but in fact it's 70 hours of racing (typical day is 4 hrs of liason and 6 hrs of racing, x 14, with 2 easy days on day 1 and 14). When I raced hare scrambles, it was a 2 hr race, so it would take 4 seasons of racing to do the same amount of hours. So in a crazy way, it really is the "race of a lifetime".

    I respect what you wrote and I have to tell you that I feel very fortunate to be able to afford to be there. When you drive through the poorer parts of SA, that feeling is even stronger, to the point of feeling guilt about it (i.e. "hmmm...what if all the $$ being spent on this race went to fixing up this village/city"). But in the end, men are men because we have crazy dreams and we push ourselves to achieve what doesn't seem possible.
    #27
  8. Seth S

    Seth S Will _____ for _____

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    Running a bike: budget $50,000 at a minimum and up to $100,000
    Running a truck or buggy: sell your house, rob a bank
    #28
  9. Seth S

    Seth S Will _____ for _____

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    There is an adage about building a house that states "You know you are half done when your money runs out." I suspect that rally racing is similar. You will know you are halfway there when your savings run out and you start in on the credit cards.


    I do have to say that the great thing about motorcycles is that anyone can go order a 450RR and for $40,000 to $50,000 depending on the Euro exchange rate you get a rally bike in the box....which may or may not buy spares access at the dakar. I am sure Robby Gordon will provide you a turn key Hummer for the Dakar but the price tag is likely in the $500,000 range. The 450RR will eat mousse and tires and chains and oil and brake pads but those are all reasonably cheap. Even a stock 450 dirtbike is pretty much a race machine compared to any stock 4 wheeled contraption that you might consider building.
    #29
  10. frog

    frog Long timer

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    Dakar budgets are definitely out of my reach but if you compare it to other races the cost per mile is reasonable.

    I spent about $10k on the baja 1000 last year to race a bike. That was a one day, well almost two full days for me :D, race. Take what I spent and multiply it by how many days Dakar is and its right on the money.

    Off to buy some lotto tickets. :)

    Edit. Not including bike but does include bike prep.
    #30
  11. Seth S

    Seth S Will _____ for _____

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    I did The Safari in Australia in 2011. It cost me about $25,000 to prep and get there and race. That event is 7 days long and now they are offering free shipping which will save you a good $4000. If you do a simple bike build and get a deal on airfare you could do the event for $10,000 to $15,000 from the USA. Huge portion of my cost ended up being shipping...airfreighting the bike overnight to Australia proved to be rather costly :)
    #31
  12. roadracer

    roadracer Been here awhile

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    In my experience, three groups of people participate in motorsports:

    A) those that are good enough to get others to pay for it (who usually came from one of the two groups below). <1%
    B) those with nothing to lose because they can easily afford it. ~70%
    C) those with nothing to lose because they can't afford it at all. ~29%

    All of us in the middle who could maaaaaybe afford it end up doing something else more financially reasonable.

    The dakar seems to be even more of a sport of leisure men than other forms of racing. I suspect a lot of the big endurance off road events are like this. There isnt enough tv coverage to support sponsorship for enough of the teams.

    Even Robbie Gordon's effort is sponsored by his own energy drink company. And what about that guy Chicherit? He's a former pro skier who took up off-road racing? He's obviously very talented, but I wouldn't be surprised if he falls into category B above.

    I think its great to hear the straight talk from Moto Benny. We can all dream and in the mean time, there are tons of other ways for us to race motorcycles on all kinds of budgets.

    Im really curious about these other rallys mentioned and what the differences are, etc. Im surprised they are so affordable compared to the baja 1k, etc.
    #32
  13. Seth S

    Seth S Will _____ for _____

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    Also, Dakar is the event that gets the most press and is most easily recognizable. The reality is that there are 10 or 20? other events that are just as difficult though shorter and less expensive to compete in. My thought on doing the Dakar and no other is kind of like saying...I have never climbed a mountain before but I want to do Mt Everest first.
    #33
  14. PackMule

    PackMule love what you do Super Moderator

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    :lol3 :lobby


    So awesome that a thread like this can happen here. :lurk
    #34
  15. PackMule

    PackMule love what you do Super Moderator

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    This thread is full of gems. Thanks, Benny! :bow
    #35