“Never ever give up!”
Hard to find a more determined and passionate Dakar rider than Manuel Lucchese. Not the wealthiest, not the fastest, the Italian always finds a way to make it to the start line… and battle his way to the finish. It was the case in 2013 when on his second appearance he eventually made it to the podium in Santiago after all sorts of setbacks. After a short break working for the organisation as a VIP guide, ‘Manu' returned last year with a new mad project, typical of what the young man is like: to compete in the malle-moto class. On a Yamaha he designed himself in the most minimalist of ways, Lucchese was leading his category all the way to Bolivia when he was struck by altitude illness. Dizzyness added to a dog crossing his path threw him to the ground. But Manu isn't the kind to give up and he made it to the finish in Rosario in a fine 44th position (2nd in malle-moto). He returns with the ambition to win his class and once again will be carrying a gopro on his helmet to make the world enjoy his adventures.
‘'When I was six, I used to read all the motoX magazines of my dad and asked him for a bike. He first laughed. My grand-parents then took me to watch a minicross race (motocross for kids), and on that evening I learned to ride a bicycle. A few months later, there was a motorbike waiting in my room. That's how it all started. When I was a kid I used to go and train in Spain during the winter and I remember going to see the Dakar prologue stage in Castellon. All the riders were my heroes. Everyone told me that the Dakar costs a lot of money and that at my age (23 at the time), it was too soon. I decided to show people but especially the young kids like me that everything is possible, through crowd-funding or just sheer determination. You need to have a vision of where you want to get. Vision. Determination. Sacrifice. Never ever give up. The mindset is what counts most. Last year for my first experience in malle-moto, I found it mentally very difficult. I would never get enough sleep and got sick in Bolivia because of the altitude. I started the rally weighing 90kgs, I finished at 80. A good diet. I've learned from the past and my goal now is to win my class and beat Jurgen Van Den Goorbergh. The Dakar in one word: magic!”