When Charan Moore describes a race as the hardest of his career, you know it must be tough: after all, the champion (who describes himself as “having fuel in his veins”) describes 2022’s Dakar Rally as “disappointing in terms of difficulty”. In contrast, this year’s weather conditions and longer and more intense stages made his adrenaline rush – and he loved every second.
That may be what helped him secure a win in the Original by Motul. This event is widely recognised as one of the most difficult races in the rally because participants have to maintain their motorcycles without any assistance. Riding for HT Rally Raid Husqvarna Racing, the 31-year-old director of the Roof of Africa relied on skills acquired through his experiences racing in Namibia and Lesotho to take the title in the event and finish 28th overall, and 12th in the Rally 2 class, out of a field of 455 vehicles.
Charan admits that his title was hard-won: “The hardest aspect of the event for me was definitely the elements. What most people don’t see about Dakar is the 3:00 am wake-up call and three-hour ride along a tar road at 0-degree temperatures to get to the start of the special, then racing as fast as possible for around five to seven hours at speeds of over 300 to 400 km. That was followed by another three-hour ride in the pouring rain and traffic through some of the busiest cities in Saudi to find the sanctuary of the Bivouac in the dark – wet, cold, and tired. After that, I had to start on the bike preparations start for the next day. It was intense.”
Although he won’t try to hold on to the Motus Original title in 2024, he is looking forward to seeking out fresh challenges at Dakar’s starting line in the coming year.