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Drivers 2017


Date/place of birth: 25 March 1972, Barrydale, South Africa
Domicile: Stellenbosch, South Africa
Marital status: Married to Jeanne-Marie, a wine maker
Children: Nicolas, born September 2012
Current job: Rally raid driver
Hobbies: Golf, mountain bike riding, kite surfing

Giniel de Villiers, a former winner of the Dakar, will again be in action with his highly experienced navigator, Dirk von Zitzewitz. The pair has been together since 2007, and handed Volkswagen their first Dakar win with the diesel Touareg in 2009. Since the move to Toyota in 2012, De Villiers and Von Zitzewitz have recorded finishes of 3rd (2012), 2nd (2013), 4th (2014) and 2nd again in 2015.


De Villiers has only finished outside the Top 10 on the Dakar Rally once, back in 2007 when his vehicle suffered an engine fire while in the lead of the race. This makes De Villiers one of the most successful Dakar racers of all time, and a second victory is certainly in his sights.