Emirati racer Balooshi flies across the Dakar 2019 finish line
After more than 5,000 kilometres, Emirati racer Mohammed Al Balooshi successfully completed his second consecutive Dakar Rally this week in Lima, Peru.
After days of riding through one of the toughest races in the world, Balooshi joins a select handful of racers to make it to the Dakar Rally finish line. He finished the 2019 edition in 26th place, a personal best.
However, the going got tough for Balooshi when his campaign got off to a rocky start after he experienced some technical problems at the start of the race. His bike also ran out of fuel at 198 kms in Stage 2. From there he inched his way up to 26th place overall at the finish line from 38th place in Stage 2.
Talking about his experience at the end of the race the Emirati said: "This has been such an extreme race, that I feel happy and privileged to be here. At points, the finish line felt really far with the petrol supply problem I suffered at the beginning of the race, and a few heavy crashes that hurt my back in reality, we always fall many times during the races and we just keep going, but sometimes it is harsher and then you suffer the pain for days because you are not able to stop to give the body time to heal."
In 2018, Balooshi came in at 32nd place and is one of the 166 riders taking part in the opening 278km stage of the world’s most infamous cross-country endurance race in the world.
He recently won the Dubai International Baja and the Bajas World Cup crown and is also the first Emirati rider to win an FIM title in offroad rallies.