Stage three at the 2024 Dakar Rally was a bittersweet one for Red Bull GASGAS Factory Racing. For Daniel Sanders, it was largely positive as he delivered a fault-free ride through the 438-kilometer special to secure the 13th fastest time. Frustratingly for Sam Sunderland, the two-time winner of the Dakar was forced to withdraw from this year’s event after suffering from a technical issue just 11 kilometers into today’s special.

  • Bittersweet day for Red Bull GASGAS Factory Racing at Dakar 2024
  • Daniel Sanders delivers calculated ride through tricky third special
  • A frustrating technical issue forces Sam Sunderland to withdraw from the event

Maintaining a consistent start to what is only his fourth ever Dakar Rally, Daniel Sanders focused on completing the tough stage three special without issue – a task made even more challenging due to the low winter sun – and that’s exactly what he did! Placing 13th was the result of a smart and steady performance by the Australian who now lies eighth overall in the provisional standings.

After an encouraging start to this year’s Dakar, and with hopes of securing a third win at the prestigious event, Sam Sunderland’s race is sadly over. Shortly after entering the time special, Sam encountered a technical issue that he was unfortunately unable to resolve.

Daniel Sanders: “Yeah, I’m feeling good after getting through another tough stage. It was another long one under the sunshine, and it was pretty dry out there with a lot of dust. Navigation was tricky too, but we made the best of it. No crashes today so myself and the bike are in good shape, which is good as today was the first leg of a marathon stage. I’m looking forward to getting some decent sleep tonight and then I’ll be out to the attack tomorrow’s stage."

Andreas Hölzl – Rally Team Manager: "It’s a been a really disappointing day for Sam, as after just 11 kilometers into the special he had to stop with a technical issue. He tried to resolve the problem but unfortunately, he was unable to do so. Of course, we feel really sorry for Sam as he was really well prepared for this race and things were looking good after two stages."

Provisional Results: Dakar Rally 2024, stage 3
1. Kevin Benavides (KTM) 4:39:28
2. Ricky Brabec (Honda) 4:40:39
3. Adrien Van Beveren (Honda) 4:42:19
13. Daniel Sanders (GASGAS) 4:49:35

Overall Provisional Classification (after stage 3)
1. Ross Branch (Hero)14:32:51
2. Jose Ignacio Cornejo (Honda) 14:36:02
3. Ricky Brabec (Honda) 14:37:59
8. Daniel Sanders (GASGAS) 14:57:04