2008 Dakar Rally

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2008 Dakar Rally
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The 2008 Dakar Rally would have been the 30th running of the annual off-road race. The rally was to start in Lisbon, Portugal on 5 January 2008, running through Europe and Africa until the finish in Dakar, Senegal on 20 January. The event was cancelled one day before the intended start date, due to concerns over a possible terrorist attack aimed at the competitors.[1]

Cancellation[edit]

The rally was cancelled on January 4, 2008, due to safety concerns in Mauritania, following the killing of four French tourists there on Christmas Eve, December 2007. France-based Amaury Sport Organisation (ASO), in charge of the 6,000 km (3,730 mi) rally, said in a statement they had been advised by the French government to cancel the race. They said direct threats had also been made against the event by "terrorist organizations".[1] Before the start of the race, rally director Étienne Lavigne had approved the Mauritanian legs only after two stages planned for Mali were scrapped. An Al-Qaeda affiliate organization was blamed for the cancellation.[1][2][3]

The ASO quickly organised a new series of replacement races, with the Central Europe Rally three months later, with a Hungary to Romania route, replacing the Dakar Rally. A new race, keeping the Dakar Rally name, was organised in South America in 2009 and has continued there since then.

Entrants[edit]

As of December 2007 there were 245 motorbikes, 20 quads, 205 cars, and 100 trucks. A total of 570 teams from various countries (50) would have raced in the Dakar this year, up from 510 in 2007.[4]

Route[edit]

The race would have begun in Lisbon, Portugal, and passed through Spain, Morocco, Western Sahara, Mauritania, and Senegal. The total race distance would have been 9,273 km (5,762 mi), of which 5,732 km (3,562 mi) was timed special stage.[5] There would have been a rest day in Nouakchott on 13 January.[6]

Planned Stages[edit]

Stage Date From To Connection Special Connection Total
km mi km mi km mi km mi
1 5 January Portugal Lisbon Portugal Portimão 104 65 120 75 262 163 486 302
2 6 January Portugal Portimão Spain Málaga 15 9 60 37 460 286 535 332
3 7 January Morocco Nador Morocco Er Rachidia 182 113 372 231 16 10 717 446
4 8 January Morocco Er Rachidia Morocco Ouarzazate 29 18 356 221 199 124 584 363
5 9 January Morocco Ouarzazate Morocco Guelmim 188 117 498 309 148 92 834 518
6 10 January Morocco Guelmim Morocco Smara 66 41 454 282 105 65 625 388
7 11 January Morocco Smara† Mauritania Atar 198 123 619 385 12 7 829 515
8 12 January Mauritania Atar Mauritania Nouakchott 44 27 450 280 37 23 531 330
9 13 January Rest day in Nouakchott
10 14 January Mauritania Nouakchott Mauritania Nouadhibou 37 23 525 326 86 53 648 403
11 15 January Mauritania Nouadhibou Mauritania Atar 111 69 552 343 22 14 685 426
12 16 January Mauritania Atar Mauritania Tidjikja 35 22 524 326 133 83 692 430
13 17 January Mauritania Tidjikja Mauritania Kiffa 131 81 398 247 2 1 531 330
14 18 January Mauritania Kiffa Mauritania Kiffa 25 16 484 301 6 4 515 320
15 19 January Mauritania Kiffa Senegal Saint-Louis 326 203 301 187 130 81 757 470
16 20 January Senegal Saint-Louis Senegal Dakar 239 149 23 14 42 26 304 189
km mi km mi km mi km mi

†Smara is located in the Moroccan-administered portion of the Western Sahara

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Keaton, Jamie (2008-01-05). "Terror threat cancels famed Dakar Rally". Toronto Star. Archived from the original on 8 January 2008. Retrieved 2008-01-05. 
  2. ^ "News Africa – Reuters.com". Reuters. Archived from the original on 8 January 2008. Retrieved 6 January 2008. 
  3. ^ Future of Dakar Rally now in doubt
  4. ^ "List of entrants". Dakar organizers. Archived from the original on 16 January 2008. Retrieved 2008-01-05. 
  5. ^ "The Route". Dakar Rally. Amaury Sport Organisation. Archived from the original on 16 January 2008. Retrieved 11 March 2014. 
  6. ^ "Map showing 2008 planned route" (PDF). Archived from the original on August 29, 2008. Retrieved 2008-01-05.