Seth Quintero has joined Toyota Gazoo Racing to tackle the 2024 Dakar Rally in the top T1+ car class. The young American will drive a Toyota GR DKR Hilux T1+ for the Japanese team as it targets a third consecutive victory in the rally raid event. He will team with Lucas Moraes, who impressed as a rookie at Dakar this year, finishing third in T1+ while running as a privateer with Overdrive Racing.
“I’m addicted to progression, obsessed by it, and this step up to T1+ is all I’ve been thinking about for a while,” said Quintero, who secured his shot at the top class by winning this year’s World Rally-Raid Championship T3 title alongside co-driver Dennis Zenz. “I always had raw speed over short stints, but now I’ve learned to hang on for two weeks at a time,” he added.
Quintero will race his 3.5-liter V6 twin turbo Toyota GR DKR Hilux T1+ car for the first time this weekend at the Dubai International Baja Then comes the Dakar Rally that will run from Jan. 5–19
Quintero and Zenz were part of the first intake of the Red Bull Off-Road Junior Team program. The first-ever global talent search for the off-road stars of the future was launched ahead of the 2020 Dakar with the goal of promoting the next generation to the top class. In four short years the program has already delivered a crop of young, hungry and talented drivers such as Cristina Gutiérrez and Mitch Guthrie Jr. to the cusp of competing in the Dakar’s premier class.
The 2024 edition of Dakar again will be based in Saudi Arabia, starting from the city of Al-Ula on Jan. 5 and continuing through Jan. 19 with daily stage distances of up to 500km across inhospitable terrain before the checkered flag flies in Yanbu.