Honda has just announced some really great news, they have officially confirmed their return to the Dakar rally and would be starting in the 2013 version of the epic race. They would be returning with a dedicated motorcycle works team. A long 23 years have passed since Honda’s last race at the Dakar and Team HRC is out to change that with its new four-rider team. Honda has competed nine times in the Dakar, then knows as the Paris-Dakar rally and won five times in between 1981-1989.
Helder Rodrigues, Felipe Zanol, Sam Sunderland and Javier Pizzolito will each command a new prototype race bike based loosely on the CRF450X. Kit parts designed for use on the standard CRF 450X model have also been developed and will be made available to a limited number of teams that will run at the 2013 Dakar Rally this January, which will travel north to south through Peru, Chile and Argentina.
Tetsuo Suzuki, President of Honda Racing Corporation said,
“The Dakar requires competitors to cover several hundred kilometers per day for more than two weeks. It needs a totally different type of vehicle from events such as motocross, trials and road races. Honda has put a great deal of effort into designing and building a powerful and winning machine. We are aiming for the championship from this first year.”