KTM’s Toby Price put in a strong ride to complete today’s 678-kilometer stage in fifth while GASGAS rider Daniel Sanders finishes Dakar Stage 8 in ninth.
Thankfully for the riders, Stage 8 at Dakar lessened the intensity a little with the 458-kilometer timed special split into two – a 179-kilometer liaison joining the two very different halves. The first leg consisted mainly of sandy tracks and dunes, but the second half posed more of a challenge with stones and rocks covering much of the final 119 kilometers leading to the finish in Ha’il.
Delivering another solid stage performance at this year’s Dakar, Price held his own through the first half of the day, before steadily closing in on the leaders over the second, rougher half of the special. Finishing fifth, just over two minutes down on teammate Benavides, Toby will enjoy a strong start position for Tuesday’s stage nine, giving him another excellent opportunity to chase down the riders ahead and claw back time on the provisional rally leaders.
Toby Price: “Stage 8 here at Dakar and we got through pretty decently, I’d say. No major mishaps or mistakes or anything today, so on that side it was good. The first half was all dunes and sand, then after a long liaison we went into the second part of the stage, which was all stones and off-piste tracks and stuff. The caps were a little harder to follow but it felt like we did a pretty decent job there too. I’m happy with fifth for the stage, and it gives us a good position for tomorrow, but we’re just not quite where we need to be on time. I’m feeling good though, having fun out there, and now I’ll look forward to tomorrow.”
Daniel Sanders: “Today didn’t start so well for me, unfortunately. I made a mistake early on and then crashed on top of a dune, so by the refueling point I’d already lost around four minutes. After that, I focused on my navigation. It was really rocky in the second half of the stage, so it was a tough day but we’re feeling good for tomorrow.”