Despres leads the manufacturerĘs efforts for Dakar glory supported by fellow Frenchmen Michael Metge, Olivier Pain and Dutchman Frans Verhoeven. Despres is the most successful Dakar rider of the last decade, winning in 2005, 2007, 2010, 2012 and 2013 on a Ktm.

Since his signing earlier this year, Despres has been a key factor in the development and preparation of the 2014 Yamaha YZ450F rally machine, combining his years of Dakar experience with YamahaĘs technical expertise.