Dakar Rally is coming to Saudi Arabia for the first time in January

Calling all petrol-heads…

Does the sound of an engine get you all revved up? If the answer is yes, there’s only one place you need to be in January. The Dakar Rally 2020 is taking place in Saudi Arabia, and it’s the first time it’s ever been here.

The 13 day event is set to run from January 5 to 17, starting in Jeddah and ending in Al-Qiddiya. An impressive 351 vehicles are set to take part in the rally, with 557 competitors from 53 nationalities coming from across the globe.

The major vehicle categories in the Dakar Rally are motorbikes, quads, cars, UTV’s and trucks. There will be 12 stages over the duration of the event, which will take place over nearly 7,900 km in total, with 5,000km in special stages.


Starting from Jeddah, competitors will head north along the Red Sea, pass through the Red Sea Project, towards city project Neom. After that, the rally will turn east and head towards Saudi Arabia’s capital city of Riyadh.

There will be one rest day, after which the rally will navigate south to the Arabian Desert, across the dunes of the Empty Quarter, then south-east into the Eastern Province as far as Shubaytah, and then back north-west to finish in Qiddiya.


For keen spectators, there will be two designated spectator areas in each stage of the valley. The details of these are kept tightly under wraps so that all competitors start on an even footing. Therefore, the spectator locations will be made public every day at 6 am via the rally’s social media pages.

David Castera, director of the Dakar said “I’m already inspired and delighted to have to design a course in such a monumental geography, made for the most audacious itineraries. We are spoilt for choice. Sports, navigation, a will to surpass oneself: all these aspects will naturally be glorified on this territory made for rally-raids.”

We’re excited…

Dakar Ralley 2020, January 5 to 17, starting in Jeddah and ending in Al-Qiddiya. dakar.com

Images: dakar.com