Aprilia and Cerutti Dominate in the 2024 Africa Eco Race

Motorcycle.com Staff
by Motorcycle.com Staff
Photo credit: Aprilia Tuareg

The 2024 Africa Eco Race was marked by a notable achievement for Aprilia, with Jacopo Cerutti steering the Aprilia Tuareg to victory. The race, spanning over 3,000 miles, witnessed the Italian team's dominance, leading the standings from the very beginning. This victory is particularly significant as it marks Aprilia Tuareg's first foray into African rallies, where it excelled despite stiff competition from seasoned riders familiar with the African landscape.

The Engineering Behind the Success

Aprilia Racing, in partnership with the Guareschi brothers' GCorse, designed the Tuareg for desert racing. This model, closely based on the production Tuareg known for its off-road capabilities, demonstrated effective riding and engine performance in the demanding African terrain. This result follows a year after initiating the 'back to Africa' project, which marked Aprilia's re-entry into desert racing. The competition iteration of the Tuareg, featuring Öhlins by Andreani suspension, a complete SC-Project titanium exhaust, and a Sprint Filter air filter, has shown positive outcomes, including achievements in the Italian Motorally and a podium finish at the Transanatolia rally.

Jacopo Cerutti's Perspective

Cerutti, reflecting on the race, acknowledged a moment of uncertainty during the rally but managed to regain the lead and maintain it until the end. He praised his competitors for their sportsmanship and credited the Aprilia Tuareg for its performance in enduring such a demanding marathon. Cerutti's experience and skill, combined with the Tuareg's capabilities, were instrumental in navigating and ultimately conquering the challenging African terrain.

Photo credit: Aprilia

Aprilia's Rich Off-Road Heritage

The brand's journey in off-road racing dates back to the 1970s, with its first forays being in motocross. Aprilia's initial success in Italian motocross championships paved the way for their entry into MotoGP and subsequent triumphs in the Trial World Championship. The brand has a history of innovation and success in off-road racing, as seen in their achievements in the Supermoto Championship with the SXV 450 and 550, and their participation in the Dakar Rally. Aprilia’s recent victory in the Africa Eco Race is a continuation of its longstanding tradition and expertise in off-road racing.

This article was co-written using AI and was then heavily edited and optimized by our editorial team.

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Motorcycle.com Staff
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2 of 4 comments
  • David K David K on Jan 17, 2024

    Doesn't KTM win these races most every year?

  • Jack Jack on Jan 17, 2024

    Brabec is ahead by 10 min. at Dakar with 2 stages left, that’d 600 seconds as opposed to the 240 second win by Jacopo. I’m not discounting his win, just wasn’t “dominating”.