The KTM-UAE Rally Team is back to defend its crown at this year’s Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge (1-6 April, 2012), with a formidable line-up of both world and regional biking champions ready to tackle the Liwa desert in the quest for victory at the Middle East’s top cross-country rally.
Having won the title of top rally team in 2011, this year the team can call on one of the greatest rally riders in the world – multiple world and Desert Challenge champion and Dakar Rally legend, Marc Coma. He will be joined by Dakar regular, Ruben Faria from Portugal, Tim Trenker (2010 World Production Trophy Cross-Country Rally champion) and Mohammed Balooshi. A 9-times holder of UAE Motocross titles, Balooshi this year became the first UAE national to take part in the motorcycle class of the Dakar Rally.
The KTM riders make up the strongest team to sign up for this year’s Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge. With the riders’ experience and skills, the KTM-UAE Rally Team is set to be the one to watch in the motorcycle category.
Tim Trenker, who is also Managing Partner of KTM-UAE, commented: “Our racing team has long been the benchmark in motorcycle rallying in the UAE. Having Coma and Faria from the KTM Factory Racing Team with us, along with Mohammed Balooshi, will once again ensure we compete to the highest levels. Over the past four years, we have proved that we can lead from the front, and this year we aim to repeat our previous successes.”
The KTM Factory Racing Team riders, Marc and Ruben are among the best in the world and have been with us at the challenge over the past few years,” continued Trenker. “From a personal point of view, this year marks the 15th year that I have taken part in the Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge. I believe this makes me the entrant who has participated in the bike category the most times, which makes this year all the more special.”
Looking forward to the race, Balooshi said: “It was a great honour to race with Marc and Ruben at the Dakar Rally earlier this year. They have taught me a lot and my experience has grown so much. I look forward to putting all that I have learned to good use at this year’s Desert Challenge, and to riding with these two excellent rally riders again!”
Participation in such a demanding event as the Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge requires significant support, and Trenker expressed his gratitude to the KTM-UAE Rally Team’s partners: “We are proud to partner with the very best, both in terms of individuals and supporting companies, to get the best for our team. We receive crucial support from VW with the vehicles they provide and Geodis Wilson for their logistical support in getting our equipment where we need it, on time. Red Bull has given us the marketing muscle and support to take us all over the world, while the Al Shafar Group and Fibra Foil are far more than just business partners. “
KTM is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of off-road racing motorbikes, street motorcycles and quads. The Austrian brand produces the bike of choice for motocross racing and dune riding. It has enjoyed unprecedented success around the world and can boast the current Dakar Rally bike champion as well as numerous 2011 world titleholders.