Dakar – one of the most enduring adventures in motorsports on the planet, fueled by desire, a willingness and almost a need to be hurtling through vast emptiness on a pulse-racing adventure -, was held on Saudi soil for the very first time in history in 2020.
The talented Saudi motorcyclist Mishal Al-Ghunaim faced the challenges of the 13-day Dakar rally over 8,000km and was the first Saudi Arabian participant ever. Pheel was one of the main partners of Mishal and helped to bring his adventure to live.
Dakar - a rally which demands it all: stamina, endurance and high performance.
The Saudi Arabian Motorsport Federation brought the world-famous Dakar Rally to Asia this year. The 2020 race attracted Dakar’s biggest field of all time, with more countries represented than ever before, and was the ultimate challenge for the brave, all of whom dared once again to test how far the limits of the human body can go.
This rally is amongst the most demanding races on earth, where bikers and quad racers have to perform on highest physical and mental levels to endure the sand dunes and mountain ranges alone. But what would have been this ultimate challenge without a local hero Saudi fans can identify with? For this reason, Pheel felt responsible for taking action, following its mission to changes how sports is experienced in Saudi Arabia.
Mishal Al-Ghunaim began riding as an enthusiast at the age of 7 and has not stopped ever since to always strive for the next adrenaline kick on his motorcycle. On hearing the news of Dakar coming to the Kingdom, the highly-talented Saudi motorcyclist participated in numerous qualifying rallies which he completed successfully – and was even the first Saudi to finish the Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge in 2019. A major boost and perfect training for the ultimate Dakar challenge.
To get one step closer to his ambitious goal for Dakar, Mishal took his preparations very seriously. “It took me a life-time of experiences and continuous development to even consider attempting it, however the 9 months before the start were 100% dedicated to physical training, motorcycle skill development and mental preparation”, he sums up and adds: “It took me 12 racing days to reach the finish line, overcoming the greatest challenges and persevering through the tough race, fatigue and struggle. This was a childhood dream come true.”
Pheel assisted Mishal in his endeavours and encouraged him to fulfill his goals, and supported him also financially. Moreover, we offered Mishal to work with Pheel’s parent company Sukna to brainstorm on 2-wheeled motorcycle touring and adventure projects as well as sports and outdoor recreation tourism services. Mishal’s input was highly welcome as it is planned to further this facet in the near future.