(chn) 1.86m / 80kg


Starteam moto club, CrossFit, motorbikes, travel, movies


Zero Mileage Rally Team

2023: 68th
2022: 79th
2021: 45th
2020: 64th
2019: 58th (7th Original by Motul)
2018: 74th
2017: Ab Stage 2

2019: Taklimakan Rally (Ab.)
2018: Taklimakan Rally (3rd)
2017: Taklimakan Rally (5th)
2016: Taklimakan Rally (4th)
2011: Taklimakan Rally (1st)
Grand China Rally


“I hope I can help more bike enthusiasts fall in love with the Dakar”

Zhao Hongyi couldn’t imagine a life without motorsport. His love for the sport was nurtured by his parents, who used to take him out travelling on a motorcycle as a child. He jokes that he “grew up sitting on his father’s bike”, which eventually inspired him to pursue a racing career. He ended up starring at national events like the famous Taklimakan Rally, which he won in 2011, but motorsport opportunities in China were somewhat limited. Zhao therefore stepped away from competition for a while but not from his passion, with his background helping him get a job as the presenter of a television show dedicated to motorsport. The 43-year-old has thus helped to bring the sport to a wider audience back home, especially since he decided to return to competitive action and pursue his childhood dream of doing the Dakar. He first lined up on the rally in 2017, sadly withdrawing on the first stage due to mechanical issues, but since 2018 he has never failed to finish. In 2019, he even demonstrated his tenacity and resourcefulness by coming seventh in the hardcore Original by Motul class. While he modestly claims that he isn’t good enough to target the top prizes at the Dakar, he was recognised for his fair play at Dakar 2023, after helping out a fellow competitor. As well as sharing his stories of the Dakar through videos and reports, Zhao recently set up a school to teach budding youngsters about motorsport and rally. He is also encouraged by the presence of the Kove Rally team on the Dakar and hopes the Chinese manufacturer will enjoy a successful 2024 edition. For Zhao it's less about the result and more about the experience, so along with teammates Zhang Min and Zakeer Yakefu he's just looking forward to another epic adventure in Saudi Arabia.

“I am very fortunate and particularly grateful for the support of Dakar fans in China. I hope that through my experience of taking part, sharing videos and photos, I can help more bike enthusiasts learn about the Dakar and fall in love with it. We had an unsatisfactory team performance at Dakar 2023. My two teammates Min and Zack both struggled with mechanical problems. But after helping a driver, I received my first Dakar trophy, the Dakar Knight Spirit Award, which was the biggest inspiration for me and a truly valuable experience. The Kove Rally team is undoubtedly a new force in China, full of potential. I hope they can develop better and better. Whenever someone asks me about Dakar, I tell them what I know without reservation, hoping that what I share will be useful to them. The TV programmes I do are all about motorcycles and racing, as well as cars. These days, more and more people are connected online, sharing motorcycle races, motorcycle life, and motorcycle experiences. The audience likes it very much, so I'm very happy. Unfortunately, I didn't return to competition at the Taklimakan Rally in 2023. This year, my main job has been to create motorcycle videos and share more motorsport experience. And of course, I've been working hard to participate in Dakar 2024. Wow, I'm starting again! This is my eighth Dakar. It's so exciting, and of course, it's also very, very difficult. I hope I can continue to complete the competition safely and enjoy it. Then I will return home and wait for the birth of my second child."




  • KTM
  • SDS Pro Race
  • Wupu Dahaidao Rally Team
  • Rally 2

Clasificación 2024


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