May 19, 2024

Price On the Verge of Dakar Victory

Toby Price has strong lead heading into final round of Dakar Rally.

With one remaining stage in the 2016 Dakar Rally, Australian rider Toby Price is on the verge of making history.

The 28-year-old from the Hunter Valley now holds a 37-minute lead over fellow KTM rider Stefan Svitko, and seems set to become the first Australian to win the event and the only competitor to have won any category of the race on just their second attempt.

Price finished second in the 12th stage, 7 minutes 32 seconds behind Portugal’s Helder Rodrigues. Svitko finished the gruelling stage in fourth position, a further 2 minutes 16 seconds behind.

The poor grip on the shale-like rock made it challenging for the riders. Price said, “It was really sketchy, really skatey and it felt like I was riding on ice. We had a couple of excursions off the track a couple of times so we thought we’d whack it down and make sure that we get to the finish.”

He made a strategic decision to allow Rodrigues, who clearly had more pace on the tough surface, through without a challenge.

Whilst the Dakar has a reputation for unprecedented drama, it would take a major failure on the final stage for Toby to miss out on claiming the victory.

Regardless, Toby is still playing down his chances of taking the win. “I haven’t really looked into the history of results yet. I’ll look at that tomorrow once it’s all done. If that happens it will be a bit of history and I’ll be pretty stoked with that.”

The final stage takes competitors into Rosario tonight (Australian time).