Air Seychelles during the weekend carried 110 professional and amateur racers and their technical support on a special flight from Johannesburg, South Africa to Jeddah, Saudi Arabia for the 2022 Dakar Rally, the airline said on Monday.
The 44th edition of the Dakar Rally is set to take place between January 2 and 14 with around 1,065 participants aboard 578 vehicles. The participants will cover 8,375 km of treacherous routes in the various categories.
The Seychelles’ national carrier made the flight on Sunday and among the passengers was 27-year-old Toyota Gazoo race driver Henk Lategan, the youngest driver to win the South African rally raid title.
The airline’s acting chief executive, Sandy Benoiton, said, “We are very happy that Air Seychelles had the opportunity to operate this charter and it is clear that sports teams across the globe continue to trust the airline based on its flexibility and reliability to operate their charters, ensuring teams arrive well rested to deliver their best performance.”
Benoiton said that due to the unprecedented environment leading to delays and possible cancellations of commercial flights, now more than ever sports professionals are looking at aircraft charters for a hassle-free experience to ensure safe and timely arrival at their destination.
Air Seychelles is expected to operate the returning flight from Jeddah to Johannesburg on Sunday January 16.
The national airline of Seychelles, an archipelago in the western Indian Ocean, was established in 1978 and began long-haul service in 1983. The airline offers international flights to Johannesburg, Mauritius, Mumbai and Tel Aviv as well as charter services on demand.