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Runner-up result for KTM’S Toby Price on two-day Dakar Rally marathon stage while GASGAS Factory Racing’s Daniel Sanders digs deep for fourth.

Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Toby Price has finished the massively challenging 48-hour chrono Stage 7 at the Dakar Rally in an impressive second place.

With a relatively short 112 kilometers of racing today to complete the two-day marathon Stage 7, riders left their temporary bivouac in Saudi’s Empty Quarter and headed back to their teams at Shubaytah. After an intensely long day yesterday on the first leg of the stage, and experiencing the bare minimum in comforts overnight, all competitors were glad to finish the 835-kilometer two-day stage and complete what has proved to be a long and exhausting first week at Dakar ’24.

Going into the marathon Stage 7 on Thursday, Toby Price knew his later start position would prove advantageous. Arriving at the rest point yesterday as third-fastest, Toby went one place better today to complete the full sixth stage as runner-up. The result now moves him up into the top five overall where he trails the provisional race leader by exactly 27 minutes. Although the gap is a little higher than the two-time Dakar champion would like, he now looks ahead to the second week of competition, confident of gaining time on his rivals.

Toby Price: “The marathon stage has definitely been a little tougher than we thought it was going to be. It was such a long day yesterday – we did about 513 kilometers in the dunes and raced for around six hours and 40 minutes! At the bivouac, we were just given a sleeping bag, a tent, a small box of food rations and tried to get some sleep. Today was good – just 112 kilometers – and it felt great to reach the finish line. We all deserve our rest day, that’s for sure. Overall, at the end of this first week, I’m feeling good, and the bike has been faultless. We’re not quite where we’d hoped we would be in terms of time, but there’s still a whole second week to go, so we’re ready for it.”

By getting most of the hard work done on yesterday’s first leg of the new Dakar chrono Stage 7, Red Bull GASGAS Factory Racing’s Daniel Sanders has today completed the final 112 kilometers and posted the fourth-fastest time overall. After racing for just over eight hours in total over the two days through the special, Chucky was certainly impressive. And for his efforts, he’s knocking on the door of the top-five now as the race reaches the halfway point. Enjoy the rest day, Daniel, it’s been a tough first week!

The new chrono Stage 7 at the Dakar was certainly challenging for every rider. On the first day, Sanders, and 11 of his competitors reached the sixth temporary bivouac where they were provided with basic provisions for the night – a tent, sleeping bag, minimal food, and water. However, by completing 513 of the 626 kilometers on leg one of the chrono, Chucky could enjoy a relatively short sprint today to complete the special, which he did as the fourth-fastest racer and finished less than seven minutes from victory.

Sanders’ great result moves him up to seventh overall now and he’s close to the top-five in the provisional standings. Tomorrow, Daniel will enjoy the event’s rest day before gearing up for week two, kicking off with stage seven on Sunday, January 14.

Daniel Sanders: “Together, stages 6a and 6b were very long! Yesterday was definitely a tough one and afterwards I didn’t get much food or sleep. Luckily, I got a fair way through the stage yesterday, so it was a quick sprint to finish today which wasn’t too bad. I’m happy to make it to the finish line and looking forward to the rest day. It looks like week two will be just as hard, so we’ll see how we go.”

Provisional Results – 2024 Dakar Rally, Stage 6
1. Adrien Van Beveren (FRA), Honda, 7:57:29
2. Toby Price (AUS), KTM, 8:01:42 +4:13
3. Ricky Brabec (USA), Honda, 8:02:31 +5:02
4. Daniel Sanders (AUS), GASGAS, 8:04:24 +6:55
5. Ross Branch (BWA), Hero, 8:07:09 +9:40

Provisional Standings – 2024 Dakar Rally (after 6 of 12 stages)
1. Ricky Brabec (USA), Honda, 27:11:21
2. Ross Branch (BWA), Hero, 27:12:12 +0:51
3. Adrien Van Beveren (FRA), Honda, 27:20:42 +9:21
4. Jose Ignacio Cornejo (CHL), Honda, 27:25:35 +14:14
5. Toby Price (AUS), KTM, 27:38:21 +27:00
7. Daniel Sanders (GASGAS) 27:47:11