Kove Moto has enlisted Joaquín Debeljuh for the Desafío Ruta 40 on 26 August to 8 September. Debeljuh announced his entry last Friday.
Debeljuh won Argentina’s CaNav domestic rally raid championship in 2018. Four years later, he entered the Dakar Rally for Xraids Experience and finished fifty-eighth overall, thirty-fourth in Rally2. His experience also includes running the Italian Enduro Championship in 2017, Morocco’s Panafrica Rally in 2019, and the South American Rally Race.
RVM, owned by Roberto Martínez, will prepare Kove’s bikes for the DR40. A similar arrangement took place at the previous World Rally-Raid Championship leg Sonora Rally in April with Rocky Mountain Detours.
“I have been following this motorcycle a lot since its launch was covered in the news, its development, and tests. Roberto Martínez contacted me about racing it in Argentina and running the Desafío Ruta 40,” Debeljuh told Motoblog Argentina. “The good thing about this bike is that it comes practically ready to compete. For those who like to do a bit of road and cross-country, it is the ideal bike. Everything is already included, even how to change the navigation tower.”
After a successful rally raid début at the 2023 Dakar Rally where all three bikes completed the race, Kove has expanded their programme to include non-Chinese riders headlined by factory member Neels Theric, who has run Sonora and will also race the W2RC-ending Rallye du Maroc. Debeljuh’s addition is intended to give the team a rider who is familiar with the DR40, similar to them hiring the American Mike Johnson for Sonora and the Mexican 1000, the latter of which saw him finish third among all bikes. Kove recently fielded six bikes on their home soil in the Taklimakan Rally, where their Dakar trio of Sunier, Deng Liansong, and Fang Minji were joined by Theric, Fang Xiangliang, and team director Zhang Xue. Sunier also raced at Sonora alongside Johnson and Theric.