ASO decided not to use the ‘marathon’ rule for stages 2 and 3 of the event after the torrential rain in the Saudi Arabian desert.

Stages 2 and 3 were set to be a special part of this year’s Dakar Rally as they had to be “marathon” stages. It meant that the participants would not be able to get any external assistance and cooperate with their teams.

However, heavy rain that took place recently in the desert flooded the bivouac in Al Artawiyah, where the drivers and riders had to spend a night. Because of that, ASO decided to cancel the ‘marathon’ rule, so external assistance would be allowed in the end.

Stage 2 would also be modified. The participants would go to the Al Qaisumah bivouac. Stage 3 could also have some changes.

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