Paraguay, Uruguay could join Dakar in future

Dakar Rally director Etienne Lavigne has said that, while the event is set to remain in South America, there may be scope for other countries to join the route in future.

The Dakar has taken place in South America since 2009, after terror threats forced organisers to move the event away from its West African heartland following the cancelled 2008 edition.

In a press conference in Villa Carlos Paz on Friday, Lavigne said: "For the moment we are not in a provision to leave South America."

Talking about the possibility of countries like Paraguay and Uruguay being added in future, Lavigne added that while they plan to include them, it is not an "easy" task.

"We need agreements with countries," he said. "It is a very intense planning work. We'll try to put together a very interesting 2017 edition.

"Having ideas and projects is essential because it is part of our ideology. We have the desire to do more.

"The philosophy of the event is to maintain a level of interest to pilots competition in general and, crucially, that is our spirit."

Lavigne also revealed that the new government of Argentina is willing to continue hosting the event, while the Bolivian president is asking for more stages in their country.

With Chile was missing from this year's competition, having featured from 2009 to 2015, a return to the Atacama desert is still possible, he added.

"Almost every month we are in contact with [Chile]. I am going to meet and possibly make a new contract with them in coming weeks," he said.

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About this article
Series Dakar
Event Dakar 2016
Article type Breaking news
Tags etienne lavigne