Tuesday, April 23, 2024

TwinTrail Racing Team plans Dakar return in 2024

Isaac Feliu‘s maiden Dakar Rally in 2022 ended with a serious accident that resulted in severe injuries. Two years later, having fully recovered, he and Carles Falcón intend to be back for the 2024 Rally, both competing in Malle Moto for TwinTrail Racing Team.

TwinTrail Racing Team is the motorsport arm of TwinTrail Experience, a Spanish adventure motorcycle organiser owned by Feliu while Falcón is company manager. In a vlog released 6 June, Feliu revealed he had registered himself and Falcón for the 2024 Dakar Rally but stressed that they have not been officially accepted for the grid. Aspiring Dakar competitors must submit their qualifications to the Amaury Sport Organisation, who then reviews the applications before the initial wave of acceptance letters are sent out on 20 July.

The duo made their Dakar débuts in 2022 in a three-man effort for TwinTrail along with Albert Martín. The team had been formed in 2021 and qualified for the 2022 Dakar Rally via the Andalucía Rally. Feliu’s race came to an abrupt end when he fell off a large drop in the opening kilometres of Stage #9, leading to a concussion and a a fracture to his C7 vertebra. After being assisted by fellow rider Harite Gabari, he was airlifted to a military hospital for evaluation. Feliu was discharged and returned to Spain in February. Although without Feliu, Falcón and Martín reached the finish in sixty-eighth and seventy-first among all bikes, respectively.

In the year and a half since, Feliu focused on rehabilitating his injuries while continuing to run TwinTrail Experience. To get back to speed, he competed in events like the amateur Hellas Rally Raid in May alongside Falcón, where Feliu retired after four legs while Falcón finished 159th overall.

The team is raising funds for the effort via donations, with contributors being labelled as Supporters. Donations are split into three tiers: Supporter Basic for €30, Supporter Pro for €60, and Supporter Navigator for €90.

“The TwinTrail Racing Team wants to run the Dakar 2024 again with the drivers Isaac Feliu and Carles Falcón in the Original by Motul category,” reads the announcement from the team. “Isaac Feliu’s accident in the 2022 Dakar had left participating again in doubt, but now the team is ready to face the toughest rally again.

“The TwinTrail Racing Team that participated in the 2022 Dakar with three amateur riders is once again ready to run the forty-sixth edition of the toughest rally in the world. This time we will do it with the riders Isaac Feliu and Carles Falcón, repeating the experience in the Original by Motul category. It is a project that started in 2021 and we want to close the circle started more than two years ago.

“At the moment, both drivers have already registered through the Dakar website and are waiting to receive confirmation of their participation from the organization (ASO). For TwinTrail, the main company behind the team, work has already begun on the entire project, from the most basic thing, which is having the right motorcycle to race as the sponsors and Supporters.

“The TwinTrail Racing Team does not really want to focus its attention on the accident suffered by Isaac Feliu in his début in Dakar 2022, but ultimately it is something that cannot be left out. The fall he suffered on Stage 9 left the Segarra rider admitted to hospital for almost a month. For a year and a half he has been recovering, forcing himself to make physical effort, acting as a guide on the trips that TwinTrail organises to this day. Furthermore, during all this time he has been debating whether or not it was a necessity or a choice to run the Dakar again. A question with a very difficult answer. Evaluating risks and benefits with the experience lived has not been an easy decision at all.

“In 2021, the idea of creating the largest Dakar team was born and TwinTrail succeeded. From the month of March until the start of the Dakar 2022, not only the team that participated in the rally was created (three drivers and three members on average) but also more than 1,000 people joined as Supporters to follow the day-to-day life of the team. and of the project. They were following each of the races in which the team participated, they encouraged, supported and, in the end, they were one of the team.

“The TwinTrail Racing Team is once again committed to sharing all the passion and experience in creating the Dakar 2024 project.”

Officially known as Original by Motul, Malle Moto is for riders competing without assistance from teams. Competitors also have few resources on hand that the ASO supplies like a headlight and tent, but otherwise must service their bikes on their own,

The 2024 Dakar Rally begins on 5 January.