Following my introduction to the world of Dakar (a while back I joined Mitsubishi for a test session in Morocco) I’ve been keeping track of the race online.

It looks like this year’s event is proving just as touch – if not tougher – than any that’s gone before.

At the end of Stage nine (of 15), 100 cars remain, meaning there have been more than 70 withdrawals. At the sharp end VW is currently dominating the top three.

Further down the field, two of the McRae Enduros are still running – one in 52nd overall. For the class of car, and in its first Dakar, that’s pretty good going.

Even though I know how tough the event is, part of me wishes I was there having a go.

If you get a minute, look up the official Dakar website. The pictures are stunning.

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