Weekend Preview: 04-Jan-09

Welcome to the first in a new series of posts previewing the coming weekend’s racing. Yes, I know it is Saturday and the weekend already – I only thought of this idea this morning!

As you know in 2008 I posted a series of F1 race previews. To save repeating the same stuff before each race (and to shamelessly find a way to create more content) I thought it would be good to expand to cover more races and to write some very short comments about each of them. We’ll see how long this lasts shall we? Hah. The format will probably develop as more races take place per weekend from April. Okay, let’s begin:

Weekend Preview: 3rd & 4th January 2009

Dakar Rally: Today is Stage 1 of the 2009 Dakar, which this year takes place in Argentina and Chile. As usual hundreds of bikes, cars and a few trucks will be tackling the 9500kms over the coming fortnight including some drivers from other disciplines, such as Carlos Sainz (ex-WRC), Robby Gordon (NASCAR) and Ukyo Katayama (ex-F1). Stage 1 runs from Buenos Aires to Santa Rosa de la Pampa.
You can follow rally updates at www.dakar.com including live stage results.
TV coverage is on Eurosport in Europe, on Versus in North America, on Fox Sports Latin America in Central and South America and on ESPN Star Sports across Asia. I’m not sure how much is live and how much is daily highlights, take a look and find out! Other coverage partners can be found here. Unfortunately I can’t get any of the channels it’s on and I don’t want to be downloading updates every day. I miss having Eurosport, I want it back!

Message to IRL IndyCar fans in US/Canada: NOW would be a great time to check if you have the Versus channel. Go and have a look, watch some of their Dakar coverage and report back to: a) me because I’m curious, b) your favourite IRL blogs, and c) the likes of Cavin and Miller. Are they taking an official Dakar feed or a Eurosport feed, or are they providing their own content, commentary, etc? Is it any good?
The Dakar Rally is organised by the same people behind the Tour de France which is probably how this coverage deal came about.

Africa Race: Since the Dakar has moved out of Africa, for the time being at least, an alternative has been set up. It’s about the scale of the early Dakar rallies so there aren’t a huge number of competitors and the TV deals aren’t great (I can’t find where it will be shown). In any case, if you’re interested you can follow it at www.africarace.com and www.africarace-live.com.

That’s about the size of it for this weekend. Thanks for reading and I hope I’ll be able to continue this feature throughout the year. Feel free to include anything I’ve missed in the comments.

If anyone can tell me how to fix the mis-alignment in the footer of my posts please let me know. I was dicking about with the settings and it went out of line, I returned it to what it was and it didn’t fix itself.

This post was written with the aid of a Lemsip as I hate colds – at least I have Mario Kart!


2 thoughts on “Weekend Preview: 04-Jan-09”

  1. First off thanks for the favorite shoutout but to answer you questions1. I have the Versus channel on my basic package but the only thing I watch on it is the Tour De France annually because I am also a big cycling fan2. My top 5 blogs would be (in no particular order)S heres what I’m thinkng, Too much racing, Irl Defender, MynameisIrl, and Irl o’ rama.3. In America I would say less than 5% of people know what the Dakar Rally is due to the fact that rallying isn’t a big form of racing here and neither of those two cover it.


  2. Thanks for the reply (and including me in your list!), but I wasn’t clear on what I meant because I’d written it badly:I was suggesting maybe letting your favourite IRL bloggers know if the Dakar coverage was good, just as another indicator of what the coming IRL coverage might be like.I get that Dakar isn’t big news in the US. I think in the UK people have heard of it as the “Paris-Dakar” but aren’t big followers. It is bigger in France, Holland, Spain, etc.


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