Can-Am Off-Road continued to assert its global racing dominance early in the new year, this time by sweeping the top positions in two different categories at the Dakar Rally in Saudi Arabia. The wins solidify the brand’s remarkable fifth consecutive championship at the Dakar Rally, which is considered the most grueling off-road race in the world.
Can-Am Factory racer Austin Jones (United States), together with navigator Gustavo Gugelmin (Brazil), finished with the best overall time in the T4 category, which are production-based side-by-sides. Gerard Farrés (Spain) finished in second place, and Rokas Baciuska (Lithuania) came in third, completing the full podium sweep for Can-Am. In fact, the top 17 finishers in the T4 category were driving a Can-Am, and the first non-Can-Am vehicle to cross the finish in 18th place was a whopping 9 hours and 30 minutes behind Jones and Gugelmin.
In the T3 category, which are prototype vehicles crafted by specialized makers and the last step before the car category, Can-Am racers finished in first and second place. Francisco Lopez and his navigator, Juan Pablo Latrach Vinagre (both from Chile) came in first place, followed by Sebastian Eriksson (Sweden) and his navigator, Wouter Rosegaar (Netherlands).
“It’s incredible to win the Dakar Rally,” said Jones. “This event is truly the ultimate test of off-road racing. Anything can happen, and we pushed hard until the very end against extremely strong competition. My navigator and team did a great job, and the Can-Am was awesome with its performance and durability.”
The 2022 Dakar Rally covered approximately 5,200 miles (8,400km) through some of Saudi Arabia’s most challenging and technical terrain. Drivers faced cliffs, canyons, dunes and rocky trails, putting their skills and vehicles up to the ultimate challenge.
Can-Am racers were supported by South Racing Can-Am, which had more than 150 personnel in Saudi Arabia helping to field everything from mechanics to logistics and meals for more than 21 Can-Am Maverick X3 racers. South Racing-built Can-Am vehicles have a 100% finishing record at the Dakar Rally, and have won the side-by-side category each year since 2018.
“It takes a true team effort to accomplish what our Can-Am Off-Road team just did at the Dakar Rally,” said Sandy Scullion, Senior Vice President, Global Retail and Service – Powersports at BRP. “We have the best of the best, from drivers to support staff to the incredible Can-Am Maverick X3 platform. We can’t wait for what’s in store for the rest of this year for racing as we plan to continue our incredible momentum with championships from all over the world.”