11 days until the 2010 Dakar Rally

The Dakar Rally -- global media event of superlative nature

Wolfsburg (22 December 2009). Millions lining the route, billions worldwide in front of television screens -- the longest marathon that motorsport has on offer, mesmerizes everybody with its fascinating and dramatic pictures: The Dakar Rally. In 2010 the mother of all desert rallies starts for the second time on the South American continent. Also competing: Five Race Touaregs with TDI diesel power prepared and fielded by the Volkswagen factory team. They face up to the challenge with the goal of defending the title, because whoever triumphs here is 'talk of the town'.

"The media interest during the Dakar Rally is unique. The fascinating pictures are broadcast on television in approximately 190 countries," says Volkswagen Motorsport Director Kris Nissen. "Compared with other leading motorsport categories the 'Dakar' provides an outstanding platform. This event is seen worldwide by billions of people. Whoever demonstrates technical expertise within this environment can be sure of huge publicity. This is also a reason for our involvement in the 'Dakar'."

The Dakar Rally achieved a substantial range on its premiere in South America in 2009. The number of TV features amounted to 1,130 in the 189 countries where television reports about the desert classic were shown. On the South American continent alone, where only five countries were evaluated, there were almost 300 million viewers. However, in the other nations around the world - from China to Canada, from New Zealand to Russia, from South Africa to Denmark - the "Dakar" is a hip subject immediately after the New Year, and not only in the sports programmes. In 2009, 2.2 billion television viewers worldwide followed the television reports - tendency increasing.

Eurosport provides the most comprehensive coverage from South America in Europe: Daily from 11 p.m. there is live coverage from the bivouac and a summary of the highlights of the day's stage. The German television station RTL broadcasts impressions and news from the 32nd running of the Dakar Rally in its programmes "Punkt sechs", "Punkt zwolf", and the daily newscasts "RTL aktuell" and "Nachtjournal". In addition, a documentary is planned after the "Dakar". The public television stations ARD and ZDF plan to make the Dakar Rally a subject in breakfast television and also in the 'Tagesschau' (News) and 'der Sportschau' (sports show).

-credit: vw