Torture test: Spectacular photos from the 2018 Dakar Rally
The 40th Dakar Rally (and the 10th to be run on the opposite side of the world from Dakar itself) has been run and won for 2018. Leaving from Lima, Peru, looping down through Bolivia and finishing in Cordoba, Argentina, a collection of remarkable human beings and outrageously extreme equipment was put through a brutal torture test across sand dunes, salt flats, and the magnificent Southern Andes mountain ranges in pursuit of the ultimate endurance adventure.
And the Rally is not just a test of man and machine; the logistical effort and preparation that goes into such an extreme event is monstrous. Not to mention the concentration of mechanical expertise that needs to follow this circus down the west side of South America.
Over 330 vehicles started the race this year, in categories representing motorcycles, quad bikes, side-by-sides, cars and the giant rally trucks. Only 185 of these, or 55 percent, managed to finish, and every one of these teams has notched up an extraordinary achievement.
Matthias Walkner (KTM Red Bull Factory Team) finished on top in the Bike division, Carlos Sainz and Lucas Cruz (Team Peugeot Total) won the car division, Edouard Nikolaev, Evgeny Yakovlev and Vladimir Rybakov (Kamaz-Master) took Truck honors, while Ignacio Casale (Casale Racing) won in the Quads, and Reinaldo Varela and Gustavo Gugelmin (South Racing - Can Am) took out the Side-by-Side division.
But it's the photographers we want to celebrate today. In its new South American home, the Dakar Rally takes competitors across some truly awe-inspiring terrain. And the combination of world-class motorsport action, jaw-dropping scenery and top-level photography leaves us with a gallery not to be missed.
Check out the video below, then jump into the photo gallery and enjoy!
For a list of the winners and finishers, check out the Dakar 2018 website.
Source: Dakar 2018