27 year old Harry Hunt has become one of the youngest Brits ever to complete the Dakar Rally, finishing 10th out of 110 drivers, ahead of many seasoned competitors and only one place behind Sebastien Loeb, the most succesful WRC driver ever. Dakar 2016, the world’s longest endurance motor race in South America, represented Hunt’s first ever Dakar Rally.
There was drama from the outset with bad weather forcing organisers to cancel the first stage and postpone the second, but this didn’t phase Hunt who remained composed throughout. By stage three Hunt had reached the top 15.
Temperatures during the rally ranged from 40+ degrees centigrade to freezing point and altitudes reached 4,750 metres. The terrain included sand dunes, deep mud and rocks.
Commenting on the race Hunt said: “We drove at a good pace in all of the stages - not too quick, not too slow - and we managed to steer clear of any major problems. My MINI ALL4 Racing was amazing and withstood endless difficult terrain. The X Raid team and my co-driver, Andy, were fantastic. I’ve learnt so much from them“.
Hunt, MINI UK Ambassador, was part of the successful X Raid MINI ALL4 Racing Team, with three team mates finishing in the top 10; Nasser Al-Attiyah (QAT) 2nd, Mikko Hirvonen (FIN) 4th and Joan ‘Nani’ Roma (ESP) 6th.
Hunt on his next move: “I’ve got a few weeks of down time planned to relax with my family and friends here in South America before it’s time to get back to training and prepare for Dakar 2017!"