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Countdown to the 2006 Dakar Rally - October 3rd 2005

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    After several months of enduring an intensive fitness and off-road training programme, Long Way Round's Charley Boorman will appear on the BMW Motorrad stand at this year's International Motorcycle and Scooter Show to talk about competing in the forthcoming Telefónica Dakar Rally.

    Accompanied by BMW Off-Road Skills instructor and six-times Dakar competitor Simon Pavey, along with accomplished rider Matt Hall, the duo will support Charley as he embarks on what is arguably the ultimate human endurance adventure. Riding BMW F650 GS Dakar machines, the team will set off from Lisbon on New Year's Day before tackling extreme terrain and varied landscapes as they travel through Morocco, Mauritania, Mali and Guinea in the hope of reaching the final stage of the rally 15 days later in Senegal, West Africa.

    The UK production team responsible for the Long Way Round will plan and manage the Dakar project, headed up by Producer/Director and Team Manager, Russ Malkin. The project has the full support of media partners Sky, Time Warner and EMI who are all very keen to maintain the great relationship they have with BMW.

    Now in its 28th year, the Dakar rally is widely regarded as one of the most physically and emotionally demanding motor sport events known to man. Charley and his team will be competing against more than 230 other riders. However, his objective is straightforward - to simply complete the 2006 rally.

    "The Dakar has fascinated me for as long as I can remember," said Charley. "I have always dreamt about competing in it, and to know I have such a great support team in place is a huge relief. My belief is that finishing the race not only relies upon your skill as a rider, but the camaraderie of the other participants and the relationships you build throughout the event. Ultimately though, every man is on his own."

    As principle sponsor, BMW Motorrad UK is providing all three BMW single-cylinder F650 GS Dakar motorcycles plus technical support.

    Charley will be available to discuss his 2006 Telefónica Dakar Rally adventure further with enthusiasts when he appears on the BMW Motorrad Stand on the opening weekend of the International Motorcycle and Scooter Show from 28 to 30 October.

    The BMW Motorrad stand is number T283 and located in hall 7 at the NEC, Birmingham. Preview day is Friday 28 October and public days run from Saturday 29 October until Sunday 6 November. To take advantage of the advance booking discount, enthusiasts can call 0870 732 2005 or visit