Chris Birch: The Road to Dakar Red Bull Video
Many nations will be represented at the 33th running of the Dakar Rally, including New Zealand.
And that country’s top rider in 2012 Dakar will be Christopher Birch, who has a list of accomplishments: five-time New Zealand Enduro Champion, three-time winner of the Roof of Africa, Red Bull Romaniacs 2010 Champion and South African Enduro champion.
Obviously a skilled rider, the 30-year old will tackle almost 5,600 miles in 15 days at 2012 Dakar aboard the Memo Tours Alfie Cox Team KTM 450 Replica.
And to further prep for 2012 Dakar, which begins Jan. 1 in Mar Del Plata, Argentina, and ends Jan. 15 in Lima, Peru, with only one day of rest, Chris Birch moved from New Zealand to South Africa to enhance his skills on terrain similar to that in South America. To assist in training, Birch took some tips from the South African legend and his team owner, Alfie Cox.
Christopher Birch (Memo Tours Alfie Cox Team KTM 450 Replica) says: “Having done many other rallies, the Dakar is the ultimate race, a huge challenge. You can’t say no to that. Now the Dakar is a lot different to extreme enduro which I normally do. It’s actually quite surreal that it’s happening.
“I really understood that while training in the dunes of Namibia. I’ll have to get used to the speed. Riding isn’t an issue; the biggest challenge is the length of the event and the lack of sleep. The main ambition is to finish. I first want to see how it goes during the first four or five days, and then I’ll see if I can make it to the Top 20.”
Attached above is a video of Birch as he preps for 2012 Dakar, courtesy of Red Bull.