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Austin JONES

(usa) 1.82m / 79kg

Hobbies

motorcycles, friends

Sponsors

Monster, Can-Am, MOTUL, Method, Tensor, J.JUAN

Vehicle

Brand: Can-Am
Model
: Maverick XRS
Preparator
: Monster Energy Can-Am
Assistance
: South Racing Monster Energy Can-Am
Class:
T3

Rankings

FIA World Cup for Cross-Country Rallies
2022: 3rd (T4)
2021:
1st (T4)
2020:
Qatar Cross-Country Rally (Ab.), Vegas to Reno (17th)
2019:
SCORE International (3rd); San Felipe 250 (1st), Baja 500 (4th), Baja 400 (4th), Silk Way Rally (5th)
2018:
Parker 425 (1st), SCORE International (1st); San Felipe 250 (2nd), Baja 500 (1st), Baja 1000 (1st), Baja Aragon 

“Moving up to the T3 feels like a natural progression”    

The talented American is still only 26 years old, but off-road racing runs in Austin’s blood. ‘AJ’ as he’s known on the bivouac, spent his childhood learning the ins and outs of racing, although it was only in 2018 that he got behind the wheel himself, after spending a year as his dad’s co-driver. In his first full season, Austin took the SCORE International championship by storm, claiming victories at the Baja 500 and Baja 1000 in the Trophy Truck Spec class. Austin took his first steps in rally-raid towards the end of 2018 by entering the Rallye du Maroc. Second on the 2021 Dakar, he followed that up by competing in the World Cup for Cross Country Rallies, taking three wins, including the final in Abu Dhabi to lift his first world title -the Monster Energy Can-Am official going on to win his first Dakar at the beginning of 2022. Throughout the American has relied on his Brazilian co-driver's even more impressive record of achievements. Gustavo Gugelmin has six Dakars under his belt. In 2018, with his compatriot Reinaldo Varela, he won the SSV category and followed that by winning the 2019 world cup in their category. Ten years ago, the Brazilian won the FIA World Cup in the T2 category. After their 2022 Dakar win and the marathon status points it gave them, the Jones / Gugelmin pairing were logical favourites to take the inaugural 2022 W2RC championship. Except a run of bad luck stopped them from making the break from rivals Mareck Goczal and Rokas Baciuska and going into the final round in Andalusia the three were separated by just 2 points! In the end Austin finished the race in fourth place to take third in the championship. For the 2023 Dakar and for the rest of the year Jones and Gugelmin will be moving up to the just as fiercely competitive T4 category and a different set of rivals, among them the current champion ‘Chaleco’ Lopez.  

A.J.: “2022 was a difficult year but we did what we could and finished on a high note with third place on the final podium. Moving up to the T3 class in ’23 feels like a natural progression for us and a good motivator. The new car is not totally different from the old one but everything is a bit bigger and faster. I’m really looking forward to racing against ‘Chaleco’ (Lopez) again, we had some great battles when we raced against each other in the T4 class in 2021, he’s a redoubtable competitor… The championship looks really interesting for the coming year. The Dakar route looks good and then there’s the Sonora Rally which is just 3 hours away from where I live and which is a great region to race in. I’m also really looking forward to racing in Argentina. My first Dakar was in Saudi Arabia but I’ve heard all the stories about how much they love racing over there. The W2RC championship definitely raced the sports profile in 2022 and racing on the different continents should give it an extra boost. In addition to the World Championship I’ll be doing some races in the States and in Baja so its going to be a busy year!”

Ranking 2023

Total Dakar Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge Sonora Rally Desafio Ruta 40 Rallye du Maroc
11 11
(10.)
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