Reigning Dakar rally champion Carlos Sainz and 13-time winner Stéphane Peterhansel will become teammates once again for the 2021 edition of the world-famous cross-country event that takes place next month.
Rallying legend Sainz, who claimed the win on the event last season, will be co-driven by Lucas Cruz in a Mini John Cooper Works Buggy, with teammate Peterhansel and co-driver Edouard Boulanger also competing in a similarly prepared vehicle.
The Dakar is one of the most well known motorsport events in the world and pushes both the competitors and machines to the extreme limit as they race over a variety of surfaces including sand dunes and wet and muddy terrain near sea shores.
The cross-country rally will start on 3 January and take place over 12 stages before concluding almost two weeks later on 15 January.
Sainz explained about how hard the rally will be and how he is ready to defend his title: “I am ready for the Dakar, both mentally and physically, and the MINI JCW Buggy is also working very well.
“This will be my third Dakar in a MINI, and we have improved from year to year. Of course it is possible to win again – but you get nothing for free at the Dakar. I definitely feel fast enough to challenge for the win.”
For Peterhansel, 2021 will be his 33rd start in the 12 day event after winning the event previously six times in the motorbike class and an additional seven times in the car class.