Dakar champ Al-Attiyah defects to Prodrive
Friday 27th October, 2023 - 10:33am
Five-time Dakar winner Nasser Al-Attiyah has defected from Toyota to Prodrive as he bids for a third straight victory in 2024.
Al-Attiyah clinched a second straight FIA World Rally-Raid Championship title earlier this month in a Toyota Hilux, the nameplate with which he won Dakar in 2019, 2022, and 2023.
Next year, the Qatari will drive a Prodrive Hunter, with long-time co-driver Mathieu Baumel continuing to read his roadbook.
Having won Dakar in 2011 in a Volkswagen and 2015 in a Mini, he now has a chance to achieve success with a fourth make.
“The Prodrive Hunter is a sensational car,” said Al-Attiyah.
“I think after three trips already to the Dakar and two second place finishes, now it’s time for this car to win the Dakar.
“I want to make myself part of Dakar history and the best way to do that is to win with four different brands.”
Al-Attiyah will now count nine-time World Rally Champion Sebastien Loeb as team-mate.
Al-Attiyah added, “This is the first time I will be a team-mate of Seb [Loeb] at the Dakar, but I already know him very well.
“He really is a great driver and the speed he has shown at the Dakar for these last two years has been incredible.
“I hope that one of us can win the Dakar in 2024.”
The 2024 Dakar Rally starts with the Prologue on January 5.