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The F1 drivers that took on the Dakar Rally challenge

From the smooth asphalt to the dusty desert, the switch from Formula 1 to Dakar is not for every driver. Yet in the past, there were a number of (former) F1 competitors who went for a Dakar adventure.

Formula 1 and the Dakar Rally do not have too many similarities. While F1 is all about speed and pure racing, Dakar requires a certain amount of patience, calm and experience.

What is similar? Perseverance. Otherwise, there is no overall victory or World Championship to be won.

In the past, there have been quite a few Formula 1 drivers who dared to make the trip.

Due to F1's demanding schedule in recent years, many of the ex-F1 drivers that featured are from decades ago. RacingNews365 lists some notable names.

Fernando Alonso

Currently, Fernando Alonso is a Formula 1 driver, but in 2020 the Spaniard could be seen at the world's toughest rally.

Alonso temporarily quit F1 at the end of 2018 and took on other challenges such as the Indy 500, the 24 Hours of Le Mans and the Dakar Rally.

Alonso didn't go to Saudi Arabia for fun. The two-time World Champion drove for the Toyota works team, becoming Nasser Al-Attiyah's teammate, among others.

His navigator was also in demand, as Marc Coma, who won the rally five times on a motorcycle, took a seat next to his compatriot.

Although he didn't win the event, Alonso left a good impression. His speed was on target, but a hard crash on stage 10 threw a spanner in the works.

Alonso misjudged a dune and rolled over several times. He would end up finishing 13th overall, partly due to that time loss.

Jacky Ickx

Jacky Ickx is and always will be a motorsport legend. The Belgian won the 24 Hours of Le Mans six times, took eight victories in Formula 1 and managed to win Paris-Dakar once.

True enthusiasts will remember: Ickx did it with a Mercedes in 1983. Yet he received the most attention when he participated with a specially converted Porsche.

He didn't take a victory, his teammate Rene Metge ran away with it in 1984, but the car is and remains an icon in the Dakar Rally.

At the moment it is still being driven in the Dakar Classic class.

Jan Lammers

Jan Lammers participated in the Dakar Rally five times, first in partnership with Jumbo and Frits van Eerd in 2010. The Dutchman made his debut in a yellow truck, but would drop out in the seventh stage.

A year later, Lammers managed to finish the rally for the first time and immediately picked up his best result ever by finishing 19th on behalf of the Ginaf Rally Power Team.

For the 2012 edition, Lammers, who won the 24 Hours of Le Mans and drove four seasons in Formula 1 between 1979 and 1982, founded his own Dakar team: Racing for Holland.

The concept was the same as the team of the same name in the 24 Hours of Le Mans: the livery of the car was based on a chequered flag, with squares where sponsors could appear. Lammers would finish twice in his last three participations and retire once, in 2014.

Jean-Louis Schlesser

Jean-Louis Schlesser is a lesser-known name in Formula 1. The Frenchman drove two races in the premier class, after which he sought refuge in other categories.

The Dakar Rally would become a success story. Schlesser made his debut in 1984 and eight years later decided to build his own dune buggy. After numerous successes in other rallies, the reward in the world's toughest rally followed in 1999 and 2000.

Schlesser won with the Schlesser-Renault and could have taken a third victory had he not acted unsportsmanlike in 2001. He blocked his nearest competitor during the penultimate stage and received a one-hour time penalty. Third place was the result.

			© xpb.cc
	© xpb.cc

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