Mitsubishi Motors Desafío Inca 2018: Overview


The Route of the Mitsubishi Motors Desafío Inca 2018 is without doubt one of the best options for competitors and teams to test themselves in the imposing dunes of the Ica desert between 13 and 16 September, getting ready to take on the 41st edition of the Dakar Rally 100% Perú. The third edition of the race will concentrate the action in a region of Peru that amazes visitors with its unsurpassable natural beauty, as well as the rich history and culture of a pre-conquest civilisation that is still alive.

In the words of Juan Valdivia

Juan Valdivia, Sporting Director of the event, tells us about this Dakar Series competition that will take place between 13 and 16 September. The route for the third edition of this race will be over terrain full of surprises and will be very demanding, both in terms of navigation and race management:

“The 3 stages will cover around 1,000 kilometres in total. The special stages will be very technical in sand dunes and the drivers and riders will find navigation difficult. The stages will be in loop format with two laps, the second containing an unexpected surprise in terms of
navigation. The event will be an excellent opportunity to prepare for the Dakar 2019 100% Peru. The magical Ica desert has been selected, with areas with a great variety of dunes: narrow passes, soft sand, enormous dunes and other obstacles that will require precise navigation to
follow the correct route; for many competitors it will be a major challenge, but not an impossible one. It is the best opportunity to work on race management and navigation and will be a hard test for the more experienced competitors, who will be in good shape to take on the 2019 Dakar Rally. As for the less experienced, we recommend them not to follow the tracks of others: try and navigate on your own account to gain experience for bigger challenges. The drivers and riders should be completely aware of the kinds of difficulties they will find: the dunes require
many hours of ‘flight time’ to master them and the Desafío Inca is the best way to do it”.

The protagonists of a new adventure
Ica is one of the most spectacular regions in the continent for staging an off-road motorsport competition. The two previous editions and the incursions into it by the Dakar Rally showed how demanding and hard it is to master the famous desert, which has left its mark on all those who
crossed it.

Luis Eguiguren was one of the first to sign up for the event. One of the representatives of the ‘Chilean armada’ in his Mitsubishi Motors Desafío Inca who has taken part in the most extreme race in the world as well as other rallies, he started out in the Bikes category and later changed to Cars. This time he is getting ready to compete with an SxS, as his aim is to return to the Dakar Rally in 2019 with this vehicle after being absent for the last three editions.

Based on his worldwide experience, Eguiguren says: “I have competed in rallies almost all over the world: Africa, Asia, Europe and South America, and the dunes of Peru are definitely the most technical on the planet. The Desafío Inca gives us the opportunity to prepare for the 2019 Dakar, and it is certainly worthwhile doing the 3.000 kilometres that separate us from the start line in January.”

Emiliano Fuenzalida is another competitor who hopes to shine in the Mitsubishi Motors Desafío Inca 2018. Born in Quito, Ecuador, he also holds Chilean nationality and is a cousin of the fondly-remembered Carlo De Gavardo and the Prohens brothers. Emiliano carries his
passion for off-road in his DNA. Having competed in some editions of the Dakar Rally in Quads, in the last few years he has chosen other races to compete in the Cars category.
Regarding the forthcoming race, he says: “It is a very demanding event that we have a lot of respect for, and where we can train with a view to the next objectives in the Dakar. Ica is a fascinating desert, with an impressive culture and the warmth of our Peruvian friends”.

The riches of Nature and History joined together

The Department of Ica is made up of five provinces: Chincha, Pisco, Ica, Palpa and Nazca, covering 21,371.83 km2 of the country’s surface area. It borders with Lima to the north, with the Department of Arequipa to the south, Huancavelica and Ayacucho to the east and the
immensity of the Pacific Ocean to the west.

Out to sea are the Ballestas islands, rocky formations a few kilometres off the coast of Paracas where a variety of penguins and sea lions live, among other species. The Nature Reserve of Paracas, an important area for the preservation of local flora and fauna, is also located there.
Inland are the Nazca Lines, ancient geoglyphs on the plain of Jumana that are best seen from the air. They were drawn by the people of the Nazca culture, who lived there between 200 BC and 600 AD. The different shapes they drew on the Nazca desert were declared a World
Heritage Site by UNESCO.

The lagoon of Huacachina is another of the area’s marvels. This oasis, just a few kilometres from the city of Ica, is a mirror of green water with vegetation in the middle of a desert that is fed by underground springs.

For the more adventurous -including those who will take part in the Desafío Inca-, the Desert of Ica is fascinating ocean of sand that will delight the visitor, even those who already know it.