Aravind made his Dakar debut with Sherco TVS in 2017 and returned for a second assault last year, but both his appearances were cut short by unfortunate crashes.
However, following an extensive training programme in Europe and Morocco, TVS Racing feels the 33-year-old is better prepared than ever to complete the world’s toughest cross-country rally.
Aravind spent much of the 2018 sidelines after sustaining separate injuries in Dakar and PanAfrica, but has recovered well in time for his 2019 rallying programme.
“I am happy that Aravind KP is returning to Dakar with full energy and vigour,” B Selvaraj, Team Manager, TVS Racing told Motorsport.com India.
“We are very confident given his experience in the International racing arena and Dakar in particular, that he will perform well.
“The previous two editions of Dakar provided immense learning opportunities for Aravind KP as the Rally tested his skills as a racer.
“He has undergone a strict rally riding and physical training regime in Europe and Morocco.
"Over the last one month, he has prioritised on spending as much time as possible on his Dakar motorcycle to get used to the power and handling on the dunes.
“He is also working very hard on his fitness through cycling, gym activities and swimming under the guidance of a French Trainer to help build his overall endurance.
“We are looking to approach Dakar with the same intensity and are determined to complete the Rally.“
#53 Sherco TVS Racing Sherco: Aravind KP
Photo by: Sherco Racing
Dakar organiser ASO has significantly overhauled the route for 2019, with the entire rally now taking place in Peru.
This means the majority of terrain will comprise of sand dunes - something Sherco TVS is already prepared for.
The Indo-French team has made special modifications to its RTR 450 bike to suit the special needs of this year’s Dakar rally, while much of its 2018 programme focused on rallying in conditions that are similar to those found in Peru.
“Dakar 2019 will be held only in Peru and 70% of the track will be sand dunes, which is unique to any Dakar,” Selvaraj explained.
“Sherco TVS Rally Factory Team has planned a major part of the training in Morocco, which has similar sandy terrain and weather conditions.
“The RTR 450 Dakar Motorcycle has also been specially modified as per the terrain, it is lighter and has a larger fuel capacity which will enable our racers to pack in most amount of time at one shot.
“We participated in the cross country Rally events at desert regions of Morocco, Argentina and Peru.”