press releases

Joan Barreda and Khalifa Al-Mutawei/Andreas Schulz, winners


After spending the last week in the desert, the “survivors” of the fifteenth edition of the Pharaons Rally finally reached the Giza Pyramids to receive their just rewards for six days of hard work.

Among the bike riders, it was Spaniard Joan Barreda taking the top honors on his Husqvarna and, in the cars category, it was Khalifa Al-Mutawei/Andreas Schulz (Mini All 4) being received by the Egyptian dignitaries to celebrate their first win in this rally. And it was a rally that more than lived up to its promises: sportsmanship, a friendly atmosphere, wondrous stages, a precise road-book and an exciting race to the end in both categories; bikes/quads and cars.

Moto: Joan Barreda is first

At 29 years of age, Joan Barreda has achieved the first important victory in his young rally career (two years long), riding the new Husqvarna developed for the Dakar. He now ...


A day of firsts….


Scoring their first stage wins of the 2012 Pharaons rally were Jakub Przygonski (KTM) among the bikes, and Miroslav Zapletal-Manciej Marton (H3 Evo) in the car category. Both of them were hoping to win at least one of the six stages, and today, finally, it was mission accomplished! Today Joan Barreda found a rider that was faster than him. The leader in the overall standings wasn’t pushing flat out for the stage win, and was more than happy to manage his lead and, more importantly, hone his navigating skills. Indeed, during this fifth stage it was very difficult for everyone to find their way, with many navigational errors being committed. The most glaring of them involved Paolo Goncalves, who lost what seemed like an eternity, 1h16’ to the stage winner Jakub Przygonski. The result allowed the Polish rider to regain his smile, as he continues his pursuit of Barreda ...


Breaking News: Schlesser’s adventure is over!


For the first time in twenty years of rally-raid experience, the ”Schlesser Adventure” faces a tough evening after having had an outstanding day !

After a random check by the FIA technical steward at the end of two special stages carried out on the day (215 km and 248 km), through a torrid climate and a super heated engines, the authorized air intake size of 37.2mm was found to be outside of the regulations!

To err is human. The Schlesser Aventures Team who is usually perfect in the preparation of their 2 WD buggies, finds itself excluded from the Egyptian championship round as notified by the FIA.

As a result, the blue Buggy exits from the stage without even appealing the decision.

We remind you that the paring of Jean-Louis Schlesser – Konstantin Zhiltsov had taken the lead following the 4th stage with 10:07 gap over the Mini All4 Racing ...


Joan Barreda breaking away... Schlesser take the lead


It was another hot day today, and the high temperatures have been the overriding characteristic of the four stages of the Pharaons rally disputed thus far. The racing starts early in the morning for this exact reason, with the sun just peeking out over the tops of the dunes and the fresh night air still lingering over the golden sands.

The fourth day of competition turned out to be slightly more difficult than yesterday, and perhaps a little less trying than what awaits the “survivors” tomorrow. As far as the bikes are concerned, everything can be summed up with a single name: Joan Barreda. He has swept the competition aside with such ease that the KTM riders can only look at his results with extreme envy. Everyone in the paddock now sees the Husqvarna as a serious threat to the Austrian manufacturer in the next Dakar.

After Barreda won the ...


Barreda repeats, Al-Mutaiwei gains breathing room


“It was a beautiful special stage, something from a real rally raid,” commented recognizance scout Stephan Le Bail, outside the Abu Mingar bivouac as he prepared to set off again for his work as rally trailblazer. “It’s a real pleasure to find such symbolic situations: sands, rows of dunes, navigation…,” added Pierre Lartigue, charged with driving the recognizance car. And the competitors got more than their fair share of sand today. Joan Barreda seems to be riding on another planet aboard his Husqvarna, and he was dominant once again today: “The bike was working very well again, and it’s the same one we will use for the Dakar,” the Catalan rider affirmed. The competition, and the KTM riders in particular, again seemed shocked by the outright speed of the Husqvarna.
As was the case in stage one, Paulo Goncalves was second fastest, 2'24'' behind, completing Husqvarnas third ...


Viladoms and Schlesser triumphant!


The second stage of the Pharaons Rally didn’t see any significant changes in the motorcycle category. Even if the day’s special stage was increasingly difficult as it wore on, both in terms of terrain and navigation, the top riders all took it in stride. Amongst the cars, the gap between Khalifa Al-Mutawei and Jean-Louis Schlesser was reduced notably, thanks to a fairly dominant win by the Frenchman.

Jordi Viladoms (KTM - Bordone Ferrari) ran a nearly perfect stage today. We say nearly because the Catalan rider started very strong in the first part, before losing a little concentration later on. As he explained in his usual calm and direct way: “The second part of the stage was faster than the first. I left the refueling point with a thirty-second lead on the others, but Barreda and Goncalves were able to catch me. I was impressed by their speed, as ...


Barreda and Al-Mutawei start strong


Following the traditional start in front of the Giza Pyramids, with the Egyptian Minister of Tourism looking on, the competitors of the 2012 Pharaons Rally completed a transfer of 124 kilometers before starting their race adventure in earnest. The first special stage, 330 kilometers of mostly unknown terrain, was the first test awaiting the racers, containing a mix of difficult navigation, fast off-road areas, sand and the first dunes. It was more than enough to open the proceedings and familiarize everyone with the Egyptian terrain. Many of the competitors described it as a difficult day, with several of the front runners quickly bunching up and running together, keeping a close eye on one another. As a part of this “game,” Joan Barreda, who started 8 minutes after the trailblazer Ullevalseter, broke away from his rivals in the final part of the stage with an unstoppable sprint. “He was really on ...


Pharaons Rally: sport and friendship


The atmosphere at the luxurious Hôtel Mövenpick, in Cairo, during the second day of technical checks was friendly and familiar. The guests weren’t surprised by the afternoon heat and happily took refuge in the pools and gardens of the hotel, while the Pharaons Rally participants took advantage of the magnificent atmosphere to recharge their “batteries.”

The mood amongst the organizers was cooperative and pleasant in the meeting hall, temporarily transformed into an administrative control center for the occasion. Every language is spoken here, and sporting advice is freely exchanged alongside friendly conversation, as everyone prepares for tomorrow race start in front of the Pyramids of Giza. On hand for the event will be the Egyptian Prime Minster, along with numerous other ministers. The authorities have taken a high interest in the event as it represents a truly unique showcase into local tourism.

The Pharaons Rally in Egypt is a ...


The Countdown has started


Few days from the departure of vehicles from Venice Port bound for Alexandria in Egypt, in order to face this new adventure of the Pharaons Rally. The first day of October will sanction the actual start of the race due to end after six legs at the Pyramids of Giza.

All is ready for the 30th year edition of the Pharaons Rally. This year marks an important winning post for the Egyptian race that is running no stop since 30 years thanks to the welcoming of Egypt and its institutions The call for vehicles at Venice Port is set for this coming Monday, from where the M/V Euroferry Malta of Grimaldi Group Napoli is bound for Alexandria.

Few days of sailing then the vehicles will be ready to be collected by drivers on September 29th, while the bikes get directly in containers at Moevenpick Media City Hotel which has ...


30 years of Pharaons Rally: Expectation is rising


Over one hundred teams registered at the thirtieth year of the Pharaons Rally, scheduled from September 29th to October 6th. Many top competitors still have to join the match in the Egyptian desert.

Expectation is increasing for the 30th year of Pharaons Rally due to run from October 1st to 6th as the final competition of FIM Cross Country Rally and second to last contest of the FIA World Cup. Little more than two months to go before this major appointment, thirty years on the scene during which the magnificent race in the Egyptian desert has grown up to become the most significant rally after the Dakar.

The track is ready and also in 2012 this is meant to be the strong point of the organization, six legs and 2800 kilometres across the outstanding deserts of Egypt. The Pharaons Rally of this coming October is not a promenade, the length ...





The 2011 edition of the Pharaons Rally has run over the outstanding “Egyptian-Libyan desert” as tradition goes, because this huge territory is the best in the world to host a high level CC rally. Today we talk of the SAND that features this area. It’s enough to think that in the 2011 edition, out of 2250 km of selective sections, right 1930 km were run over sandy grounds. Let’s see how.


The “Egyptian sand” is quite compact and, except for certain areas, it doesn’t trouble you much if faced with proper means and due attention. As all the sand in the world, in certain periods of the year it’s shifted by the wind with marvellous shapes that will advise the most skilled drivers where to place their wheels. If compared with other deserts in the world ...


Pharaons 2012: the route is ready!


The 15th Pharaons Rally is taking its definite shape. After having “designed” the route on paper, the skilled scouts, accompanied by the road-book “magician” Stephane Le Bail, have transformed the theory into practice. With the tires of their off-roads along a line of 2500 kilometers of special stage, through the most beautiful sites of the Egyptian Desert, while going to search meter after meter all the typical situations of the cross country rally. The outcome stays in six stages, both demanding at driving level as well as for navigation. So the Pharaons keeps its tradition of being a thorough rally, the perfect test for vehicles in view of the Dakar or the Africa Race. At the same time it offers a great challenge, one of the last “real” cross country rallies with the obstacles and the delights for all participants who will be enchanted by the vast Egyptian Desert, a ...




For those who love Off Road, two or four wheels, participating in a rally is always a dream. Participating in a rally as the Pharaons is a dream that becomes a reality every year for many people.

In 2012, this dream can become a”double-one”: run the Pharaons and join to Dakar Challenge. The winner of the Dakar Challenge in Pharaons 2012 will receive free engagement to the next Dakar in South America!

Participants at 2012 Pharaons Rally in the Car category can enroll, with no additional cost, to Dakar Challenge: a competition within the competition based on simple rules, reserved for "amateur" drivers who want to challenge the wonderful Egyptian desert to try to reach the south American desert.

This year the Dakar Challenge is restricted to four wheels and is reserved for all competitors who have never participated in the Dakar and that were never featured on FIA ...




From September 29th till October 6th the Pharaohs Rally will run its fifteenth edition. A round trip from the wonderful Pyramids of Giza along almost three thousands kilometers in the Egyptian desert through six unmissable stages.

Even though the world economy goes through an unfavorable moment, it is comforting to be able still to enjoy oneself . And the Pharaons Rally is such a pleasure, which goes on nonstop since fifteen years and it is there on time also this year in front of the Pyramids of Giza, in order to celebrate an important anniversary. These fifteen years have seen many champions competing in Egypt, in a desert that is a real test for men and vehicles, a challenge that’s repeated year after year always more exciting.

Like every year the Pharaons is preparing a track that will make the most romantic ones dream while it does not disappoint the ...


Pharaons is “different”! - The 2012 Rally



Only a few days have passed since the opening of inscriptions, and we have already received more than 15 requests from crews for both motorcycles and cars! The interest that this event always arouses is inspiring – not to mention the number of enthusiasts, amateurs and professionals, two wheel and four-wheel, that are anxious to see the mythical Pyramids before they launch themselves into the challenges, the obstacles and the triumphs, of the Ancient Desert.

The Pharaons boasts a favourable date calendar-wise. Our new shipping line will enable the crews to recover their vehicles from the magnificent port of Venice only three days after the finish of the Rally, a feat in itself. Remember that this is the best test to prepare for the grand winter rallies, including the legendary Dakar Rally, on account of the variety of terrain and length of tracks it offers ...


The Pharaons Rally 2012 - Tradition, and Novelty!


Tradition – and Novelty ... These are the characteristics of the 2012 Pharaons Rally, which is taking place next October 1st (preliminaries from the 29th September). The place is the Plain of Giza, right in front of the Pyramids, in a scenario that no other sporting event in the world can probably dream of matching! Tradition: this is an event that can boast 15 previous editions with the same identical organization, that - with a passion, an assistance, and a professionality everywhere recognized as unique in the world of rallies (TT) – is poised to gratify the participants with a week of thrilling emotions like no other! Still in the key of tradition; all this makes the Pharaons one of the rallies with the greatest number of participants, and one that has received the plaudits of the top grade international media - with, as always, a record of quality of services and a budget of ...