2017 Dakar Rally
Course: 977km (cancelled)
Special: 406km (cancelled)
A landslide caused by heavy rain has forced the cancellation of the 977km stage nine at this year’s Dakar Rally. It’s the fifth consecutive stage to be either cancelled or shortened by the weather conditions, which is playing into current outright leader Sam Sunderland (KTM) who has lead since day five of the 12-day event.
It means the trailing Honda squad, determined to regain as much time as it can on its rivals after four HRC riders were slapped with a one-hour time penalty, are running out of opportunities to make decent inroads.
Adjusted results means Aussie Todd Smith (KTM) finished the eighth stage in 19th place and currently sits 15th in the overall standings, while Australian Matthew Hart (Husqvarna) did finish 39th to find himself 55th overall, as previously reported.
Meanwhile, Australian KTM star Toby Price has undergone successful surgery to insert a rod and screws to set his badly broken left femur and, despite suffering a seizure reportedly due a blood clot in the 29-year old’s lung, has been cleared to fly home to Australia to begin rehabilitation.
“I’m really psyched to be cleared to fly home to Australia,” Price said on his Facebook page. “I can’t thank everyone enough for the kind words, support and messages while I’ve been here in Bolivia! “[A] huge thank you to Rod Faggotter for staying with me and helping wherever possible, lets get out of here!”
The 10th stage of the 2017 Dakar Rally will resume later on this afternoon, Australian time.
Barreda (Spain) 1st 9th
Sunderland (GBr) 3rd 1st
Walkner (Aut) 2nd 4th
Van Beveren (Fra) 10th 3rd
Quintanilla (Por) 6th 2nd
Smith (Aus) 19th 15th
Hart (Aus) 39th 55th