That’s the second stage at the Desafio Ruta 40 done and dusted. Once again, Red Bull GASGAS Factory Racing’s Sam Sunderland delivered another calculated ride which brought himself, and his awesome RX 450F, home in seventh place. Steady away into the technical special, Sunderland would go on to ride a mistake-free stage and move up to ninth in the overall provisional classification.

  • Solid seventh place on stage two for Sam Sunderland
  • Desafio Ruta 40 nears its halfway point
  • Sunderland’s confidence continues to build

Improving day by day is the name of the game for Sam Sunderland at this year’s Desafio Ruta 40. And that’s exactly what he did today. After passing the first checkpoint as the seventh fastest rider, the Brit maintained his pace and reached the end of the 334-kilometer special just over one minute away from a top-five finish. Not bad at all after well over three and a half hours of racing.

Up next is stage three. A looping, 268-kilometer special from the bivouac in Belen, it’s almost all in the sand too which is Sam’s favorite terrain. We know he’s going to enjoy it and as he’s setting off in seventh, he’ll have plenty of lines to follow, which in rally, makes the job just that little bit easier.

Sam Sunderland: “Another long day today and it was pretty physical out there. The stage had a mixture of things I love like all the sand sections, but also things I hate like the rocky riverbeds! Honestly, in terms of results, today wasn’t very special. I’m getting there slowly though and I’m still rebuilding my confidence after a difficult start to the year. I feel good within myself and my riding, so I just need to keep improving day by day.“

Download images from the 2023 Desafio Ruta 40 here.

Results Desafio Ruta 40 – stage 2 (provisional)

1. Tosha Schareina (Honda) 3:27:40
2. Luciano Benavides (Husqvarna) 3:32:22
3. Ricky Brabec (Honda) 3:35:19
7. Sam Sunderland (GASGAS) 3:40:10

Provisional Standings – Desafio Ruta 40 (after stage 2)

1. Tosha Schareina (Honda) 7:22:40
2. Luciano Benavides (Husqvarna) 7:27:23
3. Adrien Van Beveren (Honda) 7:36:00
9. Sam Sunderland (GASGAS) 7:48:25