Mohammed Al Balooshi has spoken of his pride of representing the UAE and has vowed to do all he can and achieve the best possible result in the Dakar Rally.
The Emirati was one of the 166 riders to begin Saturday’s opening 278km stage of the world’s most notorious cross-country endurance race in the Peruvian capital of Lima.
Al Balooshi will be hoping to complete all 14 stages of the two-week grueling race which will see the field tackle different terrains as they cross into Bolivia before finishing in Argentina. If he does cross the finish line, he will have completed more than 8,000km.
Al Balooshi is one just two Emiratis competing in the 40th edition of the Dakar Rally with Abu Dhabi Racing’s Sheikh Khalid Al Qassimi lining in the cars category.
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And Al Balooshi is relishing the opportunity of testing himself against the world’s best over the next fortnight in what he describes as his most ‘dangerous’ race.
“I feel very proud of having the chance to bring the UAE’s colors to Dakar,” he said. “This is the most difficult and dangerous race in the world for the bikes, and for me, as a rally rider, it’s a challenge I must take on.
“Most of the riders who have won Dakar in the past, have had to make many attempts before being able to even complete the race, and that alone speaks about the pressure, the top level of competition and the huge danger we go through every day here.
“I feel grateful for having this privilege and will do my best to represent the values of our people and ‘The Year of Zayed’ along the way.”
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