NASCAR & Auto Racing

Robby Gordon on decisions that scuttled Dakar Rally: What, there's no back-up plan?

Robby Gordon was supposed to be competing in the Dakar Rally this week, but that event was canceled at the last minute because of security concerns stemming from terrorist activity in Mauritania, where eight stages of the race were scheduled.

Gordon said the effort and expense that went into teams’ preparations for the grueling 17-day, 6,000-mile event were needlessly wasted by the decision to cancel the event.

“I can completely understand their decision to not go to Mauritania,” he said. “That I understand 100 percent. But as many years as they’ve been doing this rally not to have a back-up plan?

“...Why didn’t we run 10 days in Portugal on the same course? Something. All of the equipment was there. All of the teams were there. ...Portugal is not a dangerous area to race. It’s a safe country, it’s a beautiful country, and we had the permits to run on those roads and those trails.”