Morocco Desert Challenge

Morocco Desert Challenge (MDC) is a race, a true competition in which you enter the battle with the elements, your equipment and yourself. With 30 race trucks, more than 110 4×4’s, buggies & SSV’s and more than 50 motorbikes and quads at the start, the MDC has become the second largest rally-raid in the world.

Not only is Morocco Desert Challenge an adventure full of surprises, with fast tracks, technical parts, vast African plains, even more dunes, salt lakes and legendary Dakar stages, it also offers something really unique: 0 kilometre of liaison from the start of the first special till the finish of the last one. That’s right: no liaison, only pure rally experience. No one has done it before, others will copy it.

The organisation of the MDC 2019 consists of 170 people.

Admin & Finance                                                   4 mensen

Catering                                                                   31 mensen

Logistics                                                                   23 mensen

Medical                                                                     12 mensen

Sweepers                                                                  15 mensen

Race & CP’s                                                              33 mensen

Press & photography                                              25 mensen

Fuel service                                                              9 mensen

Helicopter                                                                4 mensen

Security                                                                    5 mensen

Various local helpers                                             9 mensen


Day one Saturday 13 April

Plage Blanche – Abetteh (prologue)

Liaison to start = 260 km
Distance Special 1 = 218 km

The real start of the rally is at the legendary Plage Blanche, 250 kms south of Agadir. We’ll kick off with a breath taking 25 km “flat out” with low tide on a virgin white beach along the Atlantic coast. From there on, the route will change. Wizard Jean- Claude Kaket will lead us over new sandy pistes to the south. Day 1 will be the perfect introduction-mix of beach, a few dunes, WRC-specials, gravel and sandy pistes. A magnificent prologue of 200km to test the machines and to determine the starting positions for the next day.

Day two Sunday 14 April

Abetteh – Smara

Distance Special 2 = 402 km
Liaison = 0 km

A first long, totally new stage brings us deep into the Moroccan (Western) Sahara. We will start with sandy tracks and will take an old, forgotten Dakar piste in the southern direction far beyond Laayoune. Afterwards, a variety of winding fast pistes with countless passages through sandy oueds and white plains ‘hors piste’ and at cap. Pleasure and spectacle guaranteed.

Day tree Monday 15 April

Smara – Assa

Distance Special 3 = 372 km
Liaison = 0 km

New tracks in stage 3 as well. Both technical, sandy as well as hard. Sometimes you imagine yourself to be in black Africa. Valleys full of trees and animals as if you are on the African Savannah. Besides that, there are several oueds, winding paths and dried salt lakes. At the compulsory military checkpoint you will be welcomed under loud applause; the chef told us that he is waiting for 10 years already for the next rally to pass his checkpoint.

Day four Tuesday 16 April

Assa – Foum Zguid

Distance Special 4 = 425 km
Liaison = 0 km

We start with a new variation on the legendary Dakar-piste, crossing the largest military zone of southern Morocco. Desolate but gorgeous landscapes. Fast tracks will be found all day (big jumps). An ideal playground for a real cross-country rally.

Day five Wednesday 17 April

Foum Zguid – Zagora

Distance Special 5 = 308 km
Liaison = 0 km

Today, your patience will be rewarded. On the agenda: sand, sand, and even more sand. After crossing Lac Iriki we will cross the entire Erg Chebbi from east to west and from north to south. After a few kilometers on sandy slopes, we dive into another dune sea. This time a never before driven Erg south of Mhamid. We will take a well-deserved rest in our bivouac at the ‘Dune de Tinfou’, not far from Zagora.

Day six Thursday 18 April

Zagora – Merzouga

Distance Special 6 = 370 km
Liaison = 0 km

Another classic desert stage with a little bit of everything, expertly composed by our race director. The sand plains from Fezzou to Marabout, the MHarech canyon, the dunes of Ouzina, more lingering tracks through sandy oueds and a first crossing of the Erg Chebbi to round off. A guaranteed show piece.


Day seven Friday 19 April

Merzouga – Bouarfa

Distance Special 7 = 427 km
Liaison = 0 km

A final day in the dunes, but definitely one for the brave: we’ll start with the north-south crossing of Morocco’s highest dunes, Erg Chebbi, followed by another section of dunes in Erg Znaigui. From here onwards, we change our cap and via a mix of sandy oueds, fast & technical tracks we start heading north. On the menu the fast tracks of Hamada and a small piece of the Rekkam-plateau. With technical parts in the morning, and navigation and lots of drifting in the afternoon.

Day eight Saturday 20 April

Bouarfa – Oujda – Saïdia

Distance Special 8 = 219 km
Liaison = 0 km

The final stage is traditionally a bit shorter, but not to be underestimated as often the sting is in the tail. A jumble of hard to find tracks through fields & pampas demand utter concentration and perfect navigation. Focus is fundamentally because it goes fast, very fast. Just south of Oujda, champagne is waiting for you!