Catering for Rally Dakar

It’s probably the most famous desert rally in the world: The Rally Dakar. This year’s main event took place in January on the Arabian Peninsula - before the Covid-19 pandemic shocked the entire world. In 12 stages the drivers made their way from Jeddah to Qiddiyah. The drivers and crews were facing a total of 7,500 km in a country where the desert is king. Hellmann Saudi Arabia supported Saudi Arabian Airline Catering in supply with food and beverages.

The Dakar Rally, previously known as Rally Paris-Dakar recently took place in Jeddah. There were many stakeholders appointed to administer various aspects of the rally. Hellmann Worldwide Logistics, Saudi Arabia was an official partner of Saudi Arabian Airline Catering Company. We supported in distribution and facilitation of the catering service for the entire event.

Bivouac dining area in the midst of the desert.

Hellmann was delegated to transport 62 trucks of food and beverages from the Saudi Airlines Catering unit in Riyadh to different Bivouac sites across the kingdom. Our Project Manager, Ajai Prasad was assigned to complete this task. The event kicked off from Jeddah on January 2nd and ended at Qiddiyah city on January 17th, which almost covered the entire kingdom geographically with 9 stopovers: Al Wajh, Neom, Al Ula, Hail, Riyadh, Wadi Al Dawasar, Haradh, Shaybah, and Qiddiyah. During these stopovers, Hellmann had to carry out stringent quality, health and safety measures to ensure our customer's quality expectations were met.

“Truly a once in a lifetime opportunity in covering approx. of 5700 kilometers within 17 days”

The average distance from Riyadh to each location was 700 Kilometers, and the sites allotted were mostly in the deserted parts of Saudi Arabia. The prime task for our team was to make sure the food and beverages were stored in an accurate temperature-controlled container and made available at the required place and time for the entire event. During this period we had faced a lot of difficulty in terms of weather changes in every city, no network coverage, and driving safely off-road. From extreme cold cities to sandstorm areas we had to make sure the food and beverages are stored in the correct temperature-controlled containers and are delivered on time at the respective locations.

Ajai Prasad, Project Manager Hellmann Saudi Arabia.

Ajai Prasad quotes “What a glorious event and the most delightful experience has it been, truly a once in a lifetime opportunity in covering approx. of 5700 kilometers within just 17 days. What touched me the most was being on the field with our customers and sharing the responsibility equally felt appeasing. It was not an easy task to handle the world's biggest rally even though our scope was limited to distribution, but possible with the right amount of support.”

Ajai Prasad

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