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TX3RN0BILL

First - Dakar Rally canceled in 30 years

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Seems like in the first time in 30 years there won't be a Rally to Dakar, due to the organisation not being able to guarantee the safety of the participants during their passage through Mauritania... Allegedly terrorism threats made the french government warn ASO, the lead rally organisation, wave off this year's edition... Damn... :angry:

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Yes, apparently they're hoping for next year the situation to be better... I just wonder what they're thinking will get better... Well, sending in the French Foreign Legion surely could help... Perhaps...

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It all started by a group of French tourists being mugged and killed by local no-gooders, the threat considered is more tribe organized crime than terrorism; The incident, added to various global and local terrorism concerns (which are not the main concern here), just convinced French authorities and the Rally organization that the security in Mauritania couldn't be guaranteed.

This usually never posed a problem as the answer was usually to change the program by choosing another country, unfortunately this year there wasn't enough time for such contingencies plans, the greatest part of the rally scheduled to take place in Mauritania.

 

Also, the Dakar has lost a lot of support through the years and gathered little interest in Europe in the previous editions (compared to what it once was), it also has been widely criticized on humanitarian, sportive and ecological ground.

This blow should not be a huge problem for the finances of the Dakar organization thanks to insurance, but some private participants won't have the same chance; added to the general decline of that particular rally and the falling financial support, it might make the next ones hard to organize.

Edited by Gunrunner

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Well, ASO, the organiser of the race, cited that the french government had reasons to believe that the Maghreb division of Al-Qaeda threats mentioning the Dakar race directly as target were credible enough as to pose a real threat, which did not specify where it would be striking the race, hence it wouldn't be something that could be "circumvented" in any way. In the end, everybody is frustrated but also understanding that it's better for all to come back home safely than seeing the race in the news not only because of it's obvious notoriety, but also because of a terrorist attack that had claimed lives... And whilst most entities have already stated their support for the next edition of the race (to be held in 2009), some pilots have claimed that it may be the end of the Dakar race as it is known so far, a race through the Sahara desert, ending at Dakar...

Edited by TX3RN0BILL

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roadside bombs in the dakar rally? I could see somebody trying to enter in an M1A1...

 

Dah. it was about time for a new course anyway.

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