The gruelling Dakar rally will not return to Africa, staying in South America one more year, announced the race's director. The beefed-up route will go through the desert north of Argentina and into Chile, and cover less of the Patagonian steppes.
Reuters - The Dakar Rally, held in Argentina and Chile in January, will return to South America next year, organisers said on Tuesday.
"Based on the success and popularity of the 2009 Dakar held for the first time in Argentina and Chile, A.S.O. (Amaury Sports Organisation) and the two countries have decided together to renew the organisation of the rally in 2010 in South America," they said in a statement on www.dakar.com.
The controversial race was moved away from its traditional route in West Africa because of terrorism fears in Mauritania which forced last year's event to be cancelled.
This year's race started and finished in Buenos Aires. Despite the change of continent, the race retained its reputation for extreme danger when French motorcyclist Pascal Terry was found dead nearly three days after he went missing during the second stage.
Three other competitors suffered serious injuries during the two-week event.
The Dakar, originally conceived 31 years ago as a trans-Saharan race from Paris to the Senegalese capital, has now claimed the lives of 26 competitors and 25 other people including two children hit by vehicles in 2006.
Date created : 2009-03-03