If one collects all seven Dragon Balls, they can summon the dragon Shenron who will grant them a wish. Gerard Farrés Güell will definitely use his to ask for a Dakar Rally win in 2024.
Farrés is set for his seventeenth Dakar Rally in 2024, driving the #402 Can-Am Maverick XRS Turbo in the SSV (formerly T4) category for South Racing with Diego Ortega Gil as co-driver. Besides his sponsors, his car will also feature the Dragon Balls and Dragon Ball protagonist Goku.
The Dragon Ball influence also extends to his helmet, which has a decal of Master Roshi on the back with the text “Uncle Farreti” (Farrés’ nickname) in the series’ title font. The titular artifacts are present on the side and top.
“They are there because I am a fan of Dragon Ball, and we embrace the values that Son Goku has such as empathy, hard work, and sacrifice,” Farrés explained at an event in a Barcelona dealership revealing his Dakar programme.
Dragon Ball is one of the most iconic anime and manga franchises of all time, often serving as a gateway into Japanese culture and either medium outside of the country.
Farrés has raced in the SSV class since 2019, though he made his Dakar début on a bike in 2006. He finished second in class twice in 2019 and 2022. At the 2023 edition, he placed fifth overall with a win in Stage #10.
“We have had to work very hard this year, and it hasn’t been easy because sometimes it costs more to get here than to compete even though it is the toughest race in the world,” Farrés commented. “I only have to thank South Racing because I’ve been racing with them for five years, with all their support. As a kid, I dreamt about this race and still do as an adult; it’s a way of life.
“We’ll have carte blanche to fight for everything this year, but we haven’t raced since last January. We will have to go from less to more with intelligence, and I hope to fight for the podium. Having Diego is special for me because he is one of those people who makes everything easy, prioritising values above all else. I would also like to thank all my sponsors and family for being there for me in difficult times; their support in adverse circumstances is greatly appreciated.”
The 2024 Dakar Rally begins on 5 January.