North’s Girls, Perminaite drop 2024 Dakar Rally plans

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Credit: Aistė Perminaitė

The 2024 Dakar Rally will be missing a pair of Lithuanian ladies as Team North’s Girls and Aistė Perminaitė have separately confirmed they will not take part. Both would have raced in the SSV (formerly T4) category.

North’s Girls is a French-Lithuanian programme consisting of Lithuanians Agnė Telyčėnaitė and Sandra Rimkė. The duo have competed thrice in the Moroccan women-only Rallye Aïcha des Gazelles and are currently focusing on the BP Ultimate 24 Horas TT Vila de Fronteira rally in Portugal.

“Those who really know me know that I have enough anger and determination and stubbornness to complete challenges that are impossible… Lithuanian, female racer, from nowhere, nothing but dreaming of getting stuck in the middle of dunes and grass in the world’s toughest rally raid,” wrote Telyčėnaitė in October. “I’ve never been so close to getting there, I’m preparing and investing in myself, I’m pushing myself and at any cost I’m moving forward by training with the available tools, step by step, head on the wheel, accumulating valuable experience! […]

“Thank you to the people who follow us, near or far, who support us and believe in us.
I need to surround myself again with the best people to support me. The team we have created will be revisited and we will reach our goals even higher. These thoughtful decisions make us wise, and we are committed to winning with you!

“A new beginning: towards DAKAR 2025, new crew, new team, new rewards for our future sponsors! Nothing will stop us! It’s time to prepare for the new season, after the French championship, we can’t wait to share new adventures with you, VERY soon, and the most important thing is to include you in each of them!”

Perminaitė is an enduro rider and FIA Rally Star finalist who started racing in the Lithuanian Cross-Country Championship in 2023. In June, she entered the Rallye Breslau in Poland where she raced an SSV with fellow Lithuanian and quad rider Adomas Gančierius as her navigator; she finished twenty-seventh in class.

She revealed to Lithuanian outlet 15min on Monday that a lack of funding will force her to miss the race; despite having some interested sponsors, they were not enough to afford a sustainable Dakar campaign. Three days prior, on 24 November, the ASO required all potential competitors to confirm their entries.

The race begins on 5 January.

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Justin is not an off-road racer, but he writes about it for The Checkered Flag.
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