Mark your calendars.
On May 12, 2021, in the bivouac at the Andalucía Rally, organizers of the 2022 Dakar Rally made their first official presentation about that event. Since there’s a lot of overlap between Andalucía and Dakar Rally participants, it seemed like a fitting place and time to make the grand reveal.
The 2022 Dakar Rally is currently scheduled to take place between January 2 and January 14, 2022. As in the past two years, it will take place entirely within the boundaries of Saudi Arabia. Scrutineering, prologue, and the race start will all take place in Ha’il. From there, participants will travel south through Riyadh, which is also where the scheduled rest day will be made. The 2022 Dakar Rally conclusion will see participants end up in Jeddah at the end of all twelve stages of the event.
Race director David Castera gave the presentation, highlighting the fact that more sand and dunes will figure heavily in the 2022 running of the event. There will be two looping stages, as well as three stages that will entirely be conducted in the dunes. It’s worth noting that the 2022 event’s Marathon Stage—which disallows any outside mechanical assistance—will be one of those that takes place entirely in the dunes.
Overall, Castera said, around 80 percent of the event will take place in thoroughly uncharted territory. This Dakar will also mark the first-ever appearance of an electronic roadbook for elite class riders. Additionally, all motorcycle riders participating in the 2022 Dakar will be required to wear airbag gear for the first time ever.
This presentation only gave those in attendance the broad strokes, with a full and detailed presentation of the route scheduled to take place in November, 2021. All vehicles participating in the Dakar will set out on their journey from the port of Marseille in December, and will arrive for collection by rally participants in Jeddah between December 26 and 28.