A full line-up of Red Bull Off-Road Junior Team race crews will tackle the latest Rallye du Maroc, starting this Saturday.
The last 12 months have witnessed the youthful team winning the FIA World Cup for Cross-Country Rallies and making Dakar history by setting the record for most stage wins at a single edition of the rally. Now the squad have arrived in North Africa determined to add to their remarkable run of recent results.
Race crews Cristina Gutiérrez (ESP)/Pablo Moreno (ESP), Seth Quintero (USA)/Dennis Zenz (GER), Mitch Guthrie Jr. (USA)/Ola Fløene (NOR) and Guillaume de Mevius (BEL)/François Cazalet (FRA) will be at the controls of the Red Bull Off-Road Junior Team’s four OT3 machines in Morocco.
Gutiérrez currently sits second in the World Rally-Raid Championship’s T3 rankings after runner-up results at the Dakar Rally and the Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge earlier this year. The Spaniard will be doing all she can in North Africa to reel in championship leader Chaleco Lopez (CHL) when racing gets underway on Saturday, October 1.
« Morocco is always one of the important races of the year because of its resemblance to what we find in the Dakar. » – Cristina Gutiérrez
Lying third in the T3 general classification is Quintero, thanks in no small part to his historic 12 stage wins at the Dakar this January. The 20-year-old American racer is still chasing his first overall rally win and this trip to Morocco represents another chance to get that victory.
« I’m super excited to get back in the car for Rallye du Maroc. We’ve put a lot of work in as a team to get the car ready for this race. » – Seth Quintero
Guthrie Jr. makes his return to rally-raid action after showing great speed in his native United States recently. Guthrie Jr. took first place in the UTV Trophy Unlimited Class at August’s Vegas to Reno race. The 25-year-old will be back behind the wheel of his OT3 at Rallye du Maroc and looking to secure another first place finish.
« The team has been doing a lot of testing to make sure the car is 100% ready and reliable. It feels great to have a car that’s not only reliable but also really fast. » – Mitch Guthrie Jr.
De Mevius is the fourth Red Bull Off-Road Junior Team driver in Morocco. The Belgian has proved his pace with stage wins at both the Dakar and the Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge this year. Now Rallye du Maroc presents the chance for De Mevius to record an overall result and put some serious championship points on the board.
« This is a very important race for the entire team. We’re focused on preparing as best we can for the Dakar which is now only four months away. » – Guillaume de Mevius
The 2022 Rallye du Maroc starts with a prologue stage in the port city of Agadir on Saturday, October 1. Then comes 1,500 kilometres of timed racing spread over five stages before the rally concludes on Thursday, October 6 back in Agadir. The rally terrain will be 50% gravel, 40% sand and 10% dunes.
Cristina Gutiérrez: « I’m very motivated to return to Rallye du Maroc in second place overall in T3. We come with the desire to fight and learn together with Pablo to do the greatest number of kilometres before the Dakar. It’s my second year at this rally that is undoubtedly one of the keys to the championship. Morocco is always one of the important races of the year because of its resemblance to what we find in the Dakar. It’s going to be a very competitive race and it’s sure to be up there with one of the best races of the year. I can’t wait to start! »
Seth Quintero: « I’m super excited to get back in the car for Rallye du Maroc. It’s been a while since we’ve gotten to race a rally-raid. We’ve put a lot of work in as a team to get the car ready for this race. We’re in the championship hunt so we’re going to aim to keep ourselves in the Top 3 and be there at the end. »
Mitch Guthrie Jr.: « There’s been some tough rally-raids in the past year so I’m excited to be back on the start line. The team has been doing a lot of testing to make sure the car is 100% ready and reliable. It feels great to have a car that’s not only reliable but also really fast. I’m looking forward to putting everything together in Morocco. »
Guillaume de Mevius: « It’s been a long time since we raced in the desert, the last time was Abu Dhabi in March. I’m excited to be working with my co-driver François. This is a very important race for the entire team. We’re focused on preparing as best we can for the Dakar which is now only four months away. »