8. Dakar Rally
Dakar – it’s impossible to capture the spirit of this rally raid race without actually experiencing it for yourself. Combining mountains, deserts and city streets, teams are forced to compete with multiple different vehicle types, including cars, trucks and motorcycles. Race segments can be hundreds of miles per day, and take place across what would seem impossible terrain for many drivers. The race began in 1978 and has gained a significant amount of recognition since that time, and it’s become one of the best-known races for physically weeding out drivers unable to make the finish line.
7. Rally Finland
Rally racing is as different from NASCAR and Formula One as it’s possible to get. Combining smaller, high-powered engines and vehicles with dirt and gravel, Rally Finland is often referred to as the Grand Prix of rally racing. It’s also the fastest race in the World Rally Championships and sees hundreds of thousands of attendees each year. Unlike some other rally races, there are no paved sections – the roads are all gravel, and there are a significant number of blind jumps drivers must make to finish.
6. Bathurst 1000
Speaking of Bathurst, the Bathurst 1000 makes this list of must-experience races. You’ll find the racing style unique – Australia’s racing series uses V8 supercars, but combines the styles of Le Mans and NASCAR into something uniquely Down Under. It includes primarily tight road segments, and runs for 1,000 kilometers at Mount Panorama. Called “The Great Race” by Australians, this pinnacle of racing deserves a spot on your bucket list for sure.