Monday, September 12, 2016

Freight Forwarding and Logistics Groups Join Up to Help Make Desert Race a Reality

European Teams Able to Ship Rally Motorcycles to Mexico
Shipping News Feature
UK – MEXICO – This month saw a cooperation between Northampton based road haulage and logistics group Knights of Old, freight forwarding outfit John Good Shipping and container shipping group MSC, when preparations began for one of the most spectacular sporting events in the global calendar, the 4th annual Baja Rally Mexico, which sees contestants race against the heat and the desert on off road motorcycles for six days across the Baja region, which lies in the north west of the country, less than 100 kilometres from Tijuana and the US border.

MSC recently strengthened its presence in Mexico and the container vessel MSC ANS is carrying the bikes and kit of 23 contestants in the race from Balboa in Spain across the Atlantic to Ensenada to arrive on 3 October, ahead of the race which takes place between 10-15 October. Logistics began on the ground throughout Europe with the delivery of motorbike shipping crates to each rider. Once rally prepped, the bikes and kit were loaded into their respective shipping containers for collection and consolidation by the Knights of Old Group.

Knights used its Northampton hub to consolidate the shipment before the company’s export packing team loaded them into two shipping containers which headed from Kettering to the Port of Liverpool to load aboard the 868 TEU ARA Atlantis for carriage to Balboa. The Knights team also arranged the necessary Carnet to effect temporary importation of the bikes into Mexico to a race which has blossomed in popularity in a short space of time.

John Good, for whom Mexico is a favourite specialist market, coordinated the forwarding of the ex-works shipment which upon arrival in Baja will be offloaded and the bikes prepared for the race at the San Nicolas Hotel and Casino, owned by the legendary Nico Saad. Because of the distances involved and the hazards likely to be encountered all riders must carry a satellite telephone and other equipment recording their progress.

In North America rally racing is in its infancy and the remoteness of Baja makes it attractive as a rally destination but difficult and expensive to access as an individual rider. The famous Dakar established in 1978, formerly known as The Paris-Dakar Rally, having experienced similar issues, offers shipping from Paris to South America to its riders. The Baja Rally team has now followed suit, offering shipping, to and from the Baja Rally, making the event accessible to European riders.

The race itself is a unique experience as can be seen from this video, this year 80 bikers from 13 countries will contest the six day race which covers 1450 kilometres in four stages. Mauricio Parra, Baja Rally Director of Government Affairs managed the shipping project, working closely with Tom Clow, Air and Ocean Director, Knights of Old Group; freight forwarder John Good and customs brokers Victor Celis and Victor Celis Jr. Speaking on behalf of Knights of Old Group, Air and Ocean Director Tom Clow commented:

"Working together with Mauricio Parra, John Good and Baja contestants, George Dennison of Motoden, and Patsy Quick from Desert Rose Racing, the Knights of Old Group have contributed to making a world class rally-event half way across the globe financially possible for European riders.”