Sunday, June 23, 2024

Sebastian Urquia enters Desafio Ruta 40

Sebastián Urquía was a regular at the Dakar Rally when it went through his home country of Argentina and South America in the 2010s. As the overarching World Rally-Raid Championship visits Argentina for the first time with the Desafío Ruta 40, he will be there too on a KTM 450 with Xraids Experience.

Urquía comped at Dakar seven times from 2014 to 2020, with the first six coming during its time in South America. However, luck was scarce during the race’s time in the continent as he failed to finish three straight rallies from 2015 to 2017, all in the second half. His best overall finish was forty-fifth in 2019.

2020 was his final Dakar as he planned to focus on the Argentinian and Uruguayan motocross championships, but wanted to experience racing in Saudi Arabia before stopping. Urquía placed fifty-ninth overall.

To prepare for Dakar, he used the Desafío Ruta 40 as a dress rehearsal where he was consistently among the top domestic entries. His last start there in 2018 saw him finish twenty-second overall and win the Group N class for non-World Cup riders. During its original run through the 2010s, the DR 40 was a leg of the Campeonato Argentino de Rally y Navegación (CaNav), where Urquía competed in the M1 category.

He currently races in the Argentine Motocross Championship’s MX3 class, scoring a podium in the MX3 C race at the season opener in Trenque Lauquen in April. While Xraids Experience specialises in rally bike rentals, the Spanish outfit also provides support for his motocross programme.

Outside of racing, he works as an industrial engineer.

The 2023 Desafío Ruta 40 begins on 27 August and run through 1 September.