A few weeks ago it was Angola's option that received the biggest attention from the media (us included) when the local federation made some publications about the prospect of hosting the Dakar Rally already in 2020. The same federation even shared an image with the "possible route" crossing Angola, Namibia, Botswana and South Africa.
But while Angola's option showed up as a strong possibility many times in the past few weeks, also Saudi Arabia is gaining strength and appearing to be a strong contender to host the next edition of the "hardest rally in the world".
All these possibilities show up because ASO has found itself in a very complicated situation in keeping organizing the Dakar Rally in South America. Not only the governments have little will to pay the sums of money the French organizer demands to host the rally in their country, but also they change minds very rapidly, leaving the organizers (and the teams) in deep troubles, since this is an event that takes months to prepare and for some racers it takes years. Sudden or last minute changes aren't welcome by anyone. With the apparent "lock down" of South America, ASO is forced to search new ground for the Dakar Rally, and Saudi Arabia comes into play as a strong option.
The news about the negotiations aren't new, but today they gained a renewed strength after some posts on Social Media made by local Saudi drivers who say the Dakar Rally is confirmed in Saudi Arabia not only for 2020, but also until 2024, which means five editions in the Arabian Peninsula.
Some other unofficial sources also tell that the Dakar Rally could cross the border to Jordan, with the two countries hosting the race.