So Who's Actually Been To Watch The Dakar?

Discussion in 'Racing' started by DeeGee, Mar 31, 2012.

  1. mcguyver

    mcguyver Long timer

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2005
    Oddometer:
    1,470
    Location:
    BRISBANE AUSTRALIA
    Any updates on this ?

    A group of 10 of us from Australia will be going over and chasing the race.

    Will be riding xr650's.

    Would be cool to meet up with some you guys.
    #41
  2. Bluebull2007

    Bluebull2007 Adventurer

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2008
    Oddometer:
    5,470
    Location:
    Oviedo, España
    I chased the last four stages of the Dakar this year with a friend of mine. I live here in Peru and did it on my 800 but a friend of mine rented from these guys and thought it was fantastic.

    We did not follow any tours, we just did our own thing and checked into hotels where we could find.

    The experience was totally awesome. We were able to see and ride with the guys on the liaisons, and I even have a few video interviews with Ned, Chris Birch and other that I still need to upload and post. :deal

    Chatting to Ned on the Stage 12 mid-stage refuel
    [​IMG]

    Fixing a flat tyre somewhere in the Atacama
    [​IMG]

    Cheering Geniel de Villiers on his South African Toyota (3rd overall on the Cars)
    [​IMG]

    Frans Verhoeven at the finish of Stage 15 special
    [​IMG]

    Chatting to Curtis and Birch at the start of Stage 12
    [​IMG]

    We saw amazing racing scenes, even a couple of crashes. :cry

    On the last day we rode into Lima with the finisher giving the an escort of honor, what an experience!

    [​IMG]


    Some TIPS:

    1 - Do it on a bike: You can pass shit loads of slow traffic and go offroad to better viewing points (a must).

    2 - Plan each day carefully: the stages are long, and finding where the guys are racing is not easy outside the official viewing points.

    3 - Official viewing points are great, but you will have to share them with 10-50,000 people. I'm not joking. Best to be avoided.

    4 - Prepare yourself for a LOT of riding, all day. It gets very, VERY tiring and can become a Dakar within a Dakar if you follow every day.

    5 - Make sure you are self sufficient. Some towns had zero hotel accommodation, everything is fully booked. You may end up camping. Each year there are more and more big bikes following the Dakar. We saw at least 100 other bikers everyday.
    #42
  3. Bluebull2007

    Bluebull2007 Adventurer

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2008
    Oddometer:
    5,470
    Location:
    Oviedo, España
    Oh, we managed to get a single day pass into the bivoac for USD 400 pp. :huh

    Yup, these need to be pre-arranged through the ASO otherwise you are not going to get in.

    The swag they offered was really shite.

    Of course being an F5 nut, I did not go on the official tour, which as Deadly99 says is quite crap, but spent the time chatting to racers and teams. Had dinner with deadly & Ned, lunch with Frans Verhoefen and few others. It was well worth it and I would do it again as a tourist.
    #43
  4. Bluebull2007

    Bluebull2007 Adventurer

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2008
    Oddometer:
    5,470
    Location:
    Oviedo, España
    PPS:

    If anyone is short cutting through Bolivia (which has mind blowing scenery by the way), PM me if you are going through Uyuni, you can pop into our silver mine just up the road and share a drink with like-minded people. Drinks are on me.
    #44
  5. jonz

    jonz Miles are my mantra

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2004
    Oddometer:
    3,193
    Location:
    CA dez (it's a dry heat)/West Yellowstone,MT
    $400!!!!!????? For a one day pit pass!!! Please tell me that's a typo.


    Sent from my DROID X2 using Tapatalk 2
    #45
  6. neduro

    neduro Addict Super Moderator

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2003
    Oddometer:
    12,179
    Location:
    Colorado Springs, CO
    That's less than I was quoted. The Dakar is not for the faint of wallet.
    #46
  7. Bluebull2007

    Bluebull2007 Adventurer

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2008
    Oddometer:
    5,470
    Location:
    Oviedo, España

    No, that what it cost us. This Dakar is a money making racket, big time. :bluduh


    NED: We got it cheaper because two others pulled out at number 99 and they wanted to sell the tickets.
    #47
  8. mcguyver

    mcguyver Long timer

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2005
    Oddometer:
    1,470
    Location:
    BRISBANE AUSTRALIA
    Thanks for the tips Blubull. Looks like I am not going into the pits then.:eek2

    If I caN get e few pics of the riders in the stages and at the start I will be happy..

    Is it possible to get up close during scrutiineering etc ?
    #48
  9. Deadly99

    Deadly99 Fast and Far

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2008
    Oddometer:
    11,348
    Location:
    Merrickville, Canada
    I think by the time the actually cost of your trip is calculated a measly 400-500$ won't really matter and getting into the bivouac would certainly be one of the highlights. Go in on the night before rest day then don't leave for two days. Of course they won't let you bring in all your gear so some planning on where to leave it would be required and you not have access to any food or water so again some forethought would be required (small backpack with food and a sleeping bag maybe). If your gonna travel half way across the world to see the race your gonna want some time in the bivy, the rest day is a great day to be there.

    Of course getting a Pass is not easy, you'll need to figure that out before you leave for your trip. Using the word media might help.

    Have fun
    #49
  10. HogWild

    HogWild Scott Whitney

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2003
    Oddometer:
    3,111
    Location:
    SoCal USA
    That's right! I think it's worth it if you've never been in before. Half the action is in the bivouac. The other half is out in remote places you'll never see as a spectator.
    #50
  11. trailtrick

    trailtrick goat trail rider

    Joined:
    May 14, 2008
    Oddometer:
    3,344
    Location:
    socal
    Thats my plan , see the race in remote areas .
    #51
  12. $low-n-0ld Racing

    $low-n-0ld Racing Arbitrary Soil Appraiser

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2009
    Oddometer:
    88
    Location:
    Eagle, Idaho
    Chasing Dakar
    <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p></o:p>
    I tried it last year on my 990. First off, it’s a long ass race. The logistics are never ending. Yes there is shipping your bike, which is not cheap. If you plan of getting your bike anytime between X-mas and New Years day, best make alternative plans. Northing but eating and drinking happens between X-mas and New Years. In addition, there are the border crossings, which take time, and the race does not wait for you. In the Atacama, and other sections of South America there are only a few gas stations, which have lines.
    <o:p></o:p>
    While it’s not unrealistic to chase the Dakar, I would suggest targeting several key stages in the Atacama.
    <o:p></o:p>
    One option for a bike would be to check with the KTM dealer in LaSenna, which had 990’s for rent. The downside of riding the 990 is that fully loaded they are pigs in the deep soft sand. But given the pace of the Dakar, the 990 is a bike which will keep pace. I would have preferred a 525 with a big desert tanks for the off road sections.
    <o:p></o:p>
    Don’t get me wrong, the Dakar was worth the effort.
    <o:p></o:p>
    Good luck, and watch out for the Pisco.
    #52
  13. trailtrick

    trailtrick goat trail rider

    Joined:
    May 14, 2008
    Oddometer:
    3,344
    Location:
    socal
    Like I said before ,you can chase the race every day , be with 1000's o fan in the spot the aso design for watch the race , O ride the high country there and see the race in remote places every other day , went the race cross to argentina stay close to the andes and enjoy the greath ridding there and catch up again went they cross to chile .camping and stayng in locals houses o do it like the BMW guys do and ride the easy roads and pavement and check in on 5 stars Hotels and never see the local culture the go back 800 + years .

    Neil I was in uyuni last month , next time Im there I stop by the mine :deal

    Pisco Sour Rocks
    #53
  14. jetsprinter

    jetsprinter n00b

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2010
    Oddometer:
    1
    Location:
    New Zealand
    A mate and I took our bikes and followed the 2011 event. Greatest adventure yet!!!!
    All the stories about how hard it is are correct, but it was worth the effort. We watched every day, except the last few, as we left to go touring in a different direction.
    As others have said, it is really hard to get good info on where to go (neither of us spoke spanish) so we would follow the first bike out in the morning and let them lead us to the start. We would then ride around the start and follow the route untill we found a good place to watch. Usually we ended up right in the middle of the action. Usually the viewing was so good we couldn't bare to leave, so we would get behind. Makes a big day by the time you catch up.
    Although we carried tents, we always found accommodation (cheep).
    Didn't get into the bivouac, but we never tried very hard. Saw much more sensational racing than we ever dreamed of.
    Rode 650s with biggest fuel tanks, normal day on the road 5am till about 7pm, and often 600 to 800 km per day.
    Fantastic viewing, fantastic riding, but also lots of hard miles on blacktop to catch up. Occasonaly we ate and slept, but you got the rest of the year for that.
    #54
  15. Bluebull2007

    Bluebull2007 Adventurer

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2008
    Oddometer:
    5,470
    Location:
    Oviedo, España
    Done! :thumb If you come by Lima as well let me know.
    #55
  16. DillDogs

    DillDogs n00b

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2011
    Oddometer:
    2
    Hi DeeGee - fellow UK rider. I am am a Dakar nut and seriously considering taking my Super Ten over to SA. What did James Cargo/Dakar Motos offer you?

    Am making some enquiries - any help would be appreciated :norton
    #56
  17. DillDogs

    DillDogs n00b

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2011
    Oddometer:
    2
    Hi

    Have been following your thread. I am seriously think about shipping over my Super Ten from the UK and following the rally - first time in SA so would like to see as much as poss. Any more re your tour options/prices?

    Any help would be appreciated

    :1drink
    #57
  18. barrier

    barrier Says who?

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2008
    Oddometer:
    604
    Location:
    North Wales UK
    #58
  19. Bluebull2007

    Bluebull2007 Adventurer

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2008
    Oddometer:
    5,470
    Location:
    Oviedo, España
    Guys if you are going to ship you need to do in September latest, because clearing stuff through customs here is a real pain in the ass and takes time.
    #59
  20. trailtrick

    trailtrick goat trail rider

    Joined:
    May 14, 2008
    Oddometer:
    3,344
    Location:
    socal
    yes i no, tryng the get everything line up right now and that is the last part o the puzzle and the harder one.You no anyone in that area down there Neil,any info be apreciate.

    Cost o the tour with out shipping is around $3800 limit to 12 riders and is room on the chase truck for 2 more iff someone wants to take the wife and she does no want to ride every day
    incluid is :
    chase truck with trailer
    guide
    breakfast and lunch every day during the rally and 8 dinners( the rest o the dinners be in small restaurants and we split the bill betwen all )
    t shirt
    access to 2 laptops iff you need internet were is avaible
    riding tru some o the most incredible part o the peru/bolivia/argentina and chile
    seing the rally every other day

    extra : ride for 10 more days after the rally is over in south chile/argentina tru the lake district with the same chase truck(diesel for the truck will be split between the riders).
    [​IMG]
    #60