Sertoes Int'l Rally preview

Sertões International Rally The Biggest Off-Road Adventure in Brazil The Brazil based Sertões International Rally, which begins tomorrow, is one of the biggest and most challenging off-road ...

                     Sertões International Rally

The Biggest Off-Road Adventure in Brazil

The Brazil based Sertões International Rally, which begins tomorrow, is one of the biggest and most challenging off-road competitions in the world, second only to the infamous Dakar event, and attracts some of the greatest competitors from around the globe.

This 2009 event marks the rally's 17th year of competition and is also the year that sees a revitalized route that takes in seven states over ten days of competition, which will see competitors covering 5036 kilometres.

This year's edition will see competitors departing on Wednesday 23 June from Goiania (Goias), with crews expected to arrive in Natal (Rio Grande do Norte) on Friday 3 July. The route takes in Sertão, one of the most isolated areas of the Brazilian backlands, which is a vast arid space.

For the first time since 2001, the event will cover more than 5000 kilometres, 2888km of which are timed special stages, and has registered 172 competitors in 117 vehicles. This is broken down into 57 motorcycles, 46 cars, seven trucks and seven quads.

The event officially begins at 10.30pm tomorrow with the opening ceremony at Goiania, which is followed by a Super Stage an hour later. The ten day competion with then run from 24 June to 3 July, with the finisher's press conference taking place at 3pm on Saturday 4 July.

The history of Sertões began in 1991 when the architect Chico Maraes organised Rally São Francisco, the first rally competition exclusively for bikes. It took place along the Riberao Preto and Sao Paulo countryside and headed to the beaches of Maceio, northwest of the country. The first edition of the Rally dos Sertões took place two years later in 1993, with the start in the Campos do Jordao mountain region in Sao Paulo state, and the finish at the beaches of Natal in Rio Grande do Norte state. The third edition in 1996 saw the entry list open up for car entries.

Even before it became part of the World Championship calendar, the Sertões International Rally already had the participation of some of the best and most important rally motorcycle riders of the world, among them Spaniard Jordi Arcarons, Portuguese entrants Jorge Guerreiro, Paulo Marques and Miguel Farrajota, Chilean Carlo de Gavardo, Austrian Heinz Kinigardner and, for the first time in 2005, the Spaniard and Paris-Dakar Rally winner Marc Coma. The presence of foreign competitors increased further in 2006 edition and had the presence of the French rally star Cyril Despres, who won the motorcycle class.

About the Sertoes International Rally
Supported by the Governments: Goias Estate, Toantins and Rio Grande do Norte; Tourism Ministry, Goias Turismo, Shopping Flamboyant, DCCO, Geradores e Motores Cummins and Mitsubishi Motors; Sertoes International Rally 2009 is supervised by FIM (Federation Internationale de Motocyclisme), CBM (Confederacão Brasileira de Motociclismo) and CBA (Confederacão Brasileira de Automobilismo).

-credit: www.sertoes.com

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About this article
Series Other rally
Drivers Cyril Despres , Marc Coma , Carlo de Gavardo , Jordi Arcarons