Bahrain Raid Xtreme Team driver Nani Roma will have a new co-driver in the Dakar Rally after Dani Oliveras tested positive for COVID-19 ahead of the event.
Oliveras had tested positive for coronavirus over three weeks ago and said he has fully recovered since.
However, the Spaniard has failed to return a negative test result before flying to Saudi Arabia for the start of the Dakar.
On Monday, the team announced that Alex Wincocq will be Oliveras’ last-minute replacement alongside Roma.
“It is incredibly disappointing for Dani (Oliveras) not to be able to help Bahrain Raid Xtreme in the teams first Dakar Rally, but I am delighted to join Nani and grateful to the BRX team for welcoming me,” said Wincocq, who has a wealth of Dakar experience, having made his first appearance in 1999 as a mechanic.
“I had been preparing for the Dakar for some time, but my previous plans did not play out the way I had anticipated, so to get the chance to compete with such an experienced and skilled driver as Nani, is hugely exciting.”
Roma added: “I would just like to thank Dani for all his commitment and support in preparing for the Dakar Rally, and sorry that he will not be able to put all the hard work into practice.
“I have known Alex for a long time, and he is a very experienced and talented person to have alongside me. We are ready to hit the ground running together, and the whole team is excited to have him join us, especially at such short notice.”
The Dakar Rally begins on January 3 in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
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