With a successful career in enduro already under his belt, Franco Caimi made his Dakar Rally debut in 2017. Straight off the bat Franco finished 8th, and notably as the best South American rider. At the very next edition - at the 2018 Dakar - everything seemed promising until a problem with his clutch forced him to retire on stage 7. That same year Caimi had also suffered a serious leg fracture on the Rallye du Maroc. He then embarked on a race against the clock to recover in time for the Dakar in January.
Caimi gave it all and tried to cope with the pain, but was ultimately forced to throw in the towel on the third stage as the suffering was unbearable. With his “never give up” mantra in his head, Franco Caimi proved his talent once again at the first ‘Saudi’ Dakar in 2020, scoring the eighth place overall. In 2021, it was a crash on stage 7 and an engine problem on stage 8 that unfortunately put an end to his ambitions. With Yamaha closing their Dakar project; Franco signed to the Hero Motorsports Rally Team in April 2021.