The Amaury Sports Organization (ASO) announced Wednesday that the 2013 Dakar Rally will be held once again in Latin America. The off-road race first staged from Paris, France to Dakar, Senegal, in 1979 will take place from January 5-20, 2013, starting in Lima, Peru, passing through Argentina (crossing the Andes mountains twice) and finishing in Santiago, Chile.
Peru’s National Chamber of Commerce estimates that the 2013 Dakar Rally will generate around $600 million for the Peruvian economy alone. José Luis Silva, minister of foreign commerce and tourism, stated that all expectations were surpassed during the 2012 race, including 1,200 hours of television exposure and millions of dollars in publicity around the world. “We hope to surpass the number of spectators from 2012 [in 2013],” Silva told Agencia Andina.
The prestigious competition of cars, trucks and motorcycles was moved from Dakar, Senegal, in 2008 to Latin America, because of the dangers encountered along the route in Africa. According to Etienne Lavigne, director of the rally, it is the organization’s intention to return to Africa at some point. But until violence and insecurity in the region subsides, Latin America will remain the host continent.