(ita) 1.8m / 100kg


Sports, ski


Lavor, Guarni&Med, Picasso Automotive, Vittorio Vanini, Suzuki Mostorsport, Dia Brax, Lista, Sparco, Adrenaline 24H, Victorious Motorsport, Binat, Shade Pro, ADB, Italvipla, Cerchio, Trinchero, Sapori Ticino, Paolo Fontiggia

First participation

Six participations in the Mille Miglia
Five participations in the Gran Premio Nuvolari


“Out of this world”

Giorgio Ciresola and Ziga Colja might be off to their first participations in the Dakar, they are not really rookies when it comes to off road driving, far from it. The Italian publicist and the Slovenian journalist share an all-consuming passion for remote experiences as illustrated by their personal background. Ciresola’s biggest playground has been Africa, from Maghreb to the southern tip of the continent, passing by Namibia, Botswana, Zambia… His racing experience stems from his love for antique cars, driving a Fiat Spider from 1931 on the Mille Miglia and the Gran Premio Nuvolari. In this environment, he met with Ermanno de Angelis, at the helm of the Desert Endurance Motorsport team, and now the Dakar Classic ties everything together. As for Colja, known as ‘The Jackal’, his passion for the Dakar pushed him to drive all the way from Europe last year to witness the event first hand after watching it for decades on TV. This year, he returns as a contender, with the two men splitting the driving and navigating duties “50/50” during the event. “I’ve driven all kinds of cars in all types of weather and conditions”, Colja assures. But a whole new challenge awaits him in the Saudi desert.

G.C.: “I started working pretty young and I didn’t have much time for leisure. But I had a bike to go around. And with some friends, we started riding in Africa, first in Morocco and Libya. We always went alone, without assistance, without guides, but it was spectacular. Then, with our families, we went on to rent jeeps in the southern part of Africa and over the years, we did Namibia, Botswana, South Africa and Zambia. We went through places that felt like being on the Moon!
So for me, doing the Dakar is like returning to my roots, doing what I used to do, but with a new adrenaline. I love the idea of going into the desert with a sporting objective.
The first goal is to not hurt ourselves, then to find the means to make it to the end, and third the classification. I’m more focused on the standings than I am on enjoying myself. I know I will anyway. If I have to jump a dune or find my way in an empty desert, I enjoy myself. But I’ll always keep in mind that I can’t mess up.”

Z.C.: “I feel like I’ve attended the Dakar every January since I was born. I’ve always followed it, I love it and eventually in 2023, I sat in my Porsche Cayenne and I drove through Irak, Iran, Dubaï… And I got to see the Dakar first hand. It was just out of this world.
Some locals gave me indications as to where I could see the vehicles pass the coming days and I followed the tracks. I struggled with low fuel one day, I got stuck in the sand… It was really challenging. But I got to sleep in the bivouac when the race was in the empty quarter and I saw everything up close: the teams, the technology, the trucks, the support and all the logistics. It’s so stunning to see all this, to see how well things work in cohesion with the drivers and the supporting teams.
The Dakar represents a certain kind of freedom. I’m attracted to vast territories, to the desert, to the silence… I’ve been through continents, through deserts, through Tadjikistan, the Kalahari desert, Namibia, Atacama, the Arctics, Middle East… Twelve hours in a car is a delight for me. And I think about all the people who would love to come here and don’t have such an opportunity. I feel responsible to give it my absolute best.”




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  • Classic Auto (Media intermedia) > 97

Clasificación 2024


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