Indycar and NASCAR Cup race winner Robby Gordon will return to the Dakar Rally after a two-year hiatus in 2019.
Gordon, a Dakar regular since 2005, took stage wins during six of his 11 outings in the event and finished as high as third overall in 2009, driving for Hummer.
He has spent recent years running his Stadium Super Trucks series, which was recently embroiled in a row in Australia.
Gordon, pictured below in his IRL days, sat out the past two rallies, but will make his comeback in January, re-joining frequent co-driver Kellon Walch in a Textron XX off-road racer.
“Kellon has been my navigator for three out of my last four Dakars,” Gordon said.
“I fully intend to come to Peru to compete for the overall [car class honours], and there is no better person to have in the right seat than Kellon.”
Blade Hildebrand and Cole Potts, two drivers from Gordon’s Stadium Super Trucks series, will join the 49-year-old in representing Team SPEED and utility vehicle manufacturer Textron in the event.
Potts will be co-driven by former Baja 1000 winner Max Eddy, while Hildebrand will be partnered by Dakar motorcycle stage winner Jonah Street, who also did the navigation for Gordon’s teammate Sheldon Creed in 2016.
Creed himself has since gone on to an oval racing career, winning the ARCA title this year and securing a NASCAR Trucks ride for 2019.
“The Dakar Rally is excited to welcome back Robby Gordon, the most famous American competitor in its history,” said the event’s competitor relations coordinator Xavier Gavory.
“An absolute legend of the Dakar for his aggressive driving style and showmanship, Gordon and Team SPEED will be one of the teams to keep an eye on in the 2019 edition.”
The Textron XX has been entered as part of the ‘Open’ car category as it complies with the regulations imposed by American off-road racing governing body SCORE.
The 2019 Dakar Rally will be held over 10 stages in Peru on January 6-17.