Bikes stage 12 as it happened - Sunderland wins the Dakar Rally 2022

Bikes stage 12 as it happened - Sunderland wins the Dakar Rally 2022

14.01.2022: DAKAR RALLY 2022 Saudi Arabia 1-14 January Stage 12 Bisha > Jeddah Friday, January 14th 2022 09:48 Moto: Sunderland wins the 44th edition of the Dakar


DAKAR RALLY 2022
Saudi Arabia
1-14 January
Stage 12  Bisha > Jeddah
Friday, January 14th 2022





09:48 Moto: Sunderland wins the 44th edition of the Dakar

He did it. At 32 years old, Sam Sunderland claimed his second Dakar title five years after his first triumph in 2017. It is a first for GasGas, which recruited him at the eleventh hour last December.

 

It comes as a relief for the Austrians, the constructor behind the red brand, who wrested the crown back from Honda after two years. Pablo Quintanilla took second place for HRC and Matthias Walkner will represent KTM on the bottom step of the podium. Fourth in the virtual classification at the last time check, Adrien Van Beveren looks set to finish just outside the top 3.




10:30 Moto: Van Beveren fourth, Short eighth


Adrien Van Beveren led the 2022 Dakar for two days, but topping the standings after stage 10 proved to be his undoing. He finished fourth overall, 18′41″ down on Sunderland.

 

One of his Yamaha teammates, Andrew Short, came in eighth, while the other, Ross Branch, crashed out of the race. There were no mechanical problems to report —kudos to John Maillon, Peterhansel's former mechanic, now working for Yamaha as technical manager.


09:22 Moto: Sunderland wraps it up


Sunderland has crossed the finish line after 164 km. The GasGas rider was still in command of the overall at the previous time check (km 120), 4'32' ahead of Quintanilla, who was gaining 5', and Walkner, who still had a 7'14' deficit despite clawing back 45'. Sunderland is looking good for the top step of the podium in Jeddah!
 



09:14 Moto: Van Beveren off the pace


The fifteenth rider out of the starting blocks, Adrien van Beveren, was tenth at km 81, 4'24' down on Quintanilla. Halfway through the special, he remains fourth overall, 17'38' behind the leader, Sunderland. Further ahead, Benavides has entered the final 10 km, while the Englishman, poised to take his second title, has reached km 120. The Frenchman's already long odds seem to be getting even longer.
 


09:03 Moto: State of affairs at the halfway point


81 km into the special, roughly halfway through the 164 km timed section, Sam Sunderland (GasGas) is sitting in fourth place, 2'16' behind his closest rival in the general standings, Pablo Quintanilla. The Honda rider is leading the special, but the Englishman still has 4'36' to spare in the virtual standings. Matthias Walkner (KTM), fifth at 3 minutes down on Quintanilla, was 7'59' behind the virtual leader of the Dakar. Van Beveren has yet to reach this part of the stage after starting in fifteenth place.









08:21 Moto: Quintanilla goes on the attac
k

Pablo Quintanilla, second overall, 6 minutes behind Sam Sunderland, went through the first time check in first place with 41 seconds in hand over teammate Ricky Brabec. Sunderland was third at over a minute back. Nacho Cornejo is hot on the Brit's heels, just ahead of the KTM duo of Kevin Benavides and Matthias Walkner, who is already conceding 2′42″ to Quintanilla. Toby Price and Adrien Van Beveren are two of many bikers who have yet to reach WP1.




07:59 Moto: Klein top rookie


Mason Klein is the top-ranked rookie. The American sits in ninth place overall, over 50 minutes down on Sam Sunderland. The 20-year-old finished on the podium of stage 3 and turned heads in his debut in the toughest rally raid on Earth. Not unlike Daniel Sanders, who stole the show in his first participation last year and fought for the top honours in this edition before withdrawing due to injury, Klein will be a man to watch in 2023.




07:41 Moto: Fifth triumph for Melot


Benjamin Melot picked up his fifth stage win in the Original by Motul category for bikers without support at the end of stage 11. The French remains third overall, 20 minutes behind Milan Engel. Leader Arūnas Gelažninkas is set to complete a successful title defence.




07:30 Moto: Benavides kicks off the special


Kevin Benavides will be relinquishing his crown at the finish after a mechanical forced him to withdraw from stage 10. He is the first biker to get to grips with the closing special of the 44th Dakar. Sam Sunderland, his teammate in the Austrian outfit and current overall leader, will be next in three minutes' time. Only a last-minute surprise can now deny the Brit his second Dakar victory.


 

./..  * times remain provisional



ASO,   photo Red Bull


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14.01.2022 / MaP

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