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TVS Racing will not be participating at the 2021 Dakar Rally, scheduled to start from 3rd January. The motorsport arm of TVS Motor Company has released an official statement confirming that they will not be participating as a factory team at the rally this year.
However, the company has confirmed that they will sponsor their rider Harith Noah who will participate in the event as a privateer. Harith Noah along with the Sherco Rally Factory Team riders Lorenzo Santolini and Rui Goncalves will continue to ride the Sherco TVS RTR 450 Rally motorcycle. However, TVS Racing will not provide any technical support during the event.
The official statement from TVS Motor Company regarding the 2021 Dakar Rally, says,
"TVS Racing, the factory racing team of TVS Motor Company, will not be participating in Dakar Rally 2021. Harith Noah, TVS Racing factory rider, will participate as a privateer in the Dakar Rally with Sherco Rally Factory Team and will be sponsored by TVS Racing."
"He will ride the Sherco TVS RTR 450 Rally motorcycle. We would like to wish Harith and Sherco Factory team racers, technical team and support staff the very best for the Dakar Rally."
This is a major update since TVS Racing was the first Indian factory team to participate at the Dakar Rally. The TVS Racing Factory Team have been part of the Dakar Rally for six outings, participating every year between 2015 to 2020. The Dakar Rally 2021 would have been the team's seventh outing.
All its six outings at the Dakar Rally have been with Sherco. However, with TVS not having revealed the exact reason for their exit, it does raise questions between the two's (Sherco & TVS) partnership.
Apart from the six outings at Dakar, the Sherco-TVS partnership has also taken part in other international events as well. This includes the Rally of Morocco, PanAfrican Rally, Baja Aragon and Merzouga Rally.
Talking about the 2021 Dakar Rally itself, the event will be held between the 3rd to 15th of January. Participants will start from Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, cover a total of over 7500km and end in the same location.
Thoughts On TVS Racing Pulling Out Of The 2021 Dakar Rally
The TVS Racing Factory Team is the first Indian team to participate at the ‘world's toughest race', back in 2015. With TVS now officially out, it leaves just Hero MotoSport as the only other Indian team to participate at the 2021 Dakar Rally.