TreasuryONE Hilux ready for Arabian Epic

Hennie de Klerk, Juan Möhr and the TreasuryONE team are on the ground with ants in their pants in Saudi Arabia and ready to race their Toyota Hilux 8,000 km through the Arabian Desert in Dakar 2024.

The team arrived and unpacked the race car and equipment, before trekking to the Al Ula start bivouac to culminate a two-year build-up to the big moment of the January 5 start.

2018 Dakar rookie winner Hennie, who finished again in 2020, returns to Dakar in his purpose-built all-new Ultimate class FIA T1+ TreasuryONE Toyota Hilux. “These butterflies are growing big wings,” Hennie de Klerk smiled as the team prepared for documentation and scrutineering at Al Ula.

“Dakar is bigger and more competitive than ever. It’s going to be a big challenge to get a top 20 result with an ever increasing number of competitive drivers and teams at the event, but we are up for the challenge. We have done all the hard work. Now all we need is some luck and a little good fortune.

The team arrived in Jeddah Sunday, unloaded the vehicles, and spent the morning packing and preparing for the chaotic 750 km trip there. They camped and saw the new year in en route, before arriving at the Al Ula start bivouac to sort race documentation, Dakar branding, navigation equipment and the rest, before setting up camp.

“We ran a 255 km shake down on Wednesday, which went very well, before pre scrutineering, where the FIA checked some changes they requested to the chassis and roll cage and some tiny changes to their decals after inspecting the car back in SA. Scrutineering followed and the car passed following that lengthy process.

“That’s a is a huge relief as the FIA is so particular on safety and thoroughly checks every aspect. “So, we’re ready for Friday’s Prologue to determine Saturday’s starting positions. The prologue is vital, as we hope to be well enough up the field to be able to push from the start on Saturday’s first 532 km stage of an epic 8,000 kilometres over the next two weeks.

“Getting here has been adventure in itself, but now the real test starts. Let’s say we have ants in our pants as we wait it out for the Prologue on Friday, and then race proper from Saturday,” de Klerk concluded. “Dakar is a huge challenge and once again a dream come true. Let’s do this, team!”

2024 will be Hennie’s third Dakar, while navigator Juan makes his fifth start in the TreasuryONE Hilux. Hennie took rookie victory alongside Gerhard Schutte in the TreasuryONE Amarok in South America in Dakar 2018, while he and Johann Smalberger finished the Saudi Arabian Dakar driving a Red-Lined VK56 in 2020.