GAC Takes Up UAE Desert Challenge for Sixth Year Running
Company to provide vital logistics support for Middle East's biggest motorsport event

3 November 2006, Dubai - For the sixth consecutive year, GAC Logistics has risen to the challenge as the main logistics service provider for men and their racing machines participating in the UAE Desert Challenge.

Race to Starting Point

Logistics for UAE's biggest motorsport event, which attracts an international assembly of over 120 racers from more than 40 nations, is a mammoth task. Planning must start immediately after the previous race has completed, and heats up during summer.

"While the racers will be competing against nature and one another, GAC has been racing against time. Our key challenge was to meet the tight deadlines to ensure timely and seamless delivery," says Peter Orange, Regional Logistics Manager, GAC Middle East.

GAC has been assisting international teams, who make up sixty percent of the participants, with flying in their vehicles and equipment from worldwide locations to the race, which flags off on 5th November, Sunday at Umm Suqueim. During the five-stage, six-day event, GAC will provide further support to "teams in racing" by transporting vehicles and other support equipment as the teams move from base to base.

Moving these expensive and often "one-of-its-kind" racers such as rally cars, quads, bikes and trucks require special expertise in packing, lashing and securing. In addition, specific customs requirements and procedures add to the challenge.

"Thanks to our well-honed system and established rapport with the Customs authorities, we help ensure that there are no delays in the clearance process. The teams were thrilled to make it in time without any hassle before flag off!"

On-site support with emergency preparedness

In addition to handling the delivery to the race and back, GAC will be providing local logistics support for day-to-day transportation operations of the race. As the race crosses some of the most demanding desert terrain in the Middle East, GAC will follow the teams across the shifting sands in the tough climate, assisting them with movement of equipment. This includes team spares, engine parts, tools and tyres etc. so that the participants can perform any repairs during the race at each control point.

A dedicated GAC team is also on standby 24/7 to oversee the operations and respond to any contingency. One of the more memorable jobs saw GAC utilising six 40-foot trailers within 12 hours to move catering equipment to the Challenge Camp at Bivouac site from Dubai to feed 2,500 people there.

"Flexibility and resourcefulness to meet any logistics demands are a must. With our extensive experience in handling logistics for the Desert Challenge, we are well-prepared for any emergencies."

GAC's involvement in the Desert Challenge extends to sponsorship. The company has been the long-time official sponsor of Team Saluki, which has traditionally competed in the race. The team of UAE-based amateur drivers clinched 5th place overall in 2004 against an ever increasing number of professional racers, and was ranked 1st amongst those from the Gulf based entrants in 2005.

Specialised logistics sector

Backed by an integrated Middle East network, extensive expertise and infrastructure, GAC has established a strong position in the highly specialised sector of logistics for special events, bands, and shows concerts. GAC also handled other international motor events like 2005 World Superbike and the 2004 Marlboro MotoGP. This year, GAC has been appointed the logistics partner for the 2006 15th Asian Games in Doha next month.

-credit: GAC