Ouch. Harsh words for the Paris-Dakar Rally have recently eminated from his Eminence's orginization, the Catholic Church. Apparently a recent edition of the Vatican Newspaper included an article entitled "Paris-Dakar: The Bloddy Race of Irresponsibility," which effectively slams the race for its violence and penetration into non-Western cultures. The article comes not long after a South African motorcycle competitor named Elmer Symons (shown at right) died during the fourth stage of the event in the Morocco desert on Tuesday, January 9th.

We're sure his Holiness and crew realize that any motorsport carries with it the potential for personal injury and even death. The Paris-Dakar rally seems to goad the Vatican's goat, however, particularly because it employs a track that winds and weaves through various locals and regions that haven't had a whole lot of exposure to Western culture, let alone astonishingly fast all-terrain rally vehicles whizzing by at triple-digit speeds.

Mr. Symons death is truly tragic, and it seems odd the Vatican would use its occasion as the impetus for an attack against the rally. Unfortunately, racers of every sort die all too often in their pursuit for victory, so by that token we're not sure if the Vatican is formally denouncing all forms of motorsports, and without the original article (Damn! Shouldn't let our subscription lapse!) we wouldn't venture a guess.

Please keep the comments respectful. Thanks.

[Source: Antara News]