Dakar 2021: Stage 5 sees Hero MotoSports riders move into top 20 overall
Hailed as the toughest stage of Dakar 2021, the 661km long (456km special) Stage 5 saw both Hero MotoSports riders move into the top 20 standings overall, with Joaquim Rodrigues in 19th, and Sebastian Buhler in 20th. Buhler gained a few spots in the standings, finishing the stage in 20th position, following the lead rider by 30m 24s, while JRod finished the stage 22nd, barely two minutes behind his teammate.
JRod had a minor fall over one of the rocky river beds that characterised this stage, and sustained damage to his navigation tower, forcing on-spot repairs that slowed him down. He says, "It was a really difficult stage with a lot of navigation and a lot of rocks. I had a minor crash in one of the river beds that was full of rocks and a few screws from my navigation tower came off lose. I had to fix the bike and after that I lost my focus and lost my way a few times. Then I just decided to take it easy and bring the bike home so I am happy to be back at the bivouac safely to fight for another day. After a tough day it was such a great news to hear that Santosh has no major concerns with his injury and will recover well. We are really happy to hear this. "
Third Hero MotoSports rider CS Santosh suffered a high-speed crash on Stage 4 and was withdrawn from the rally. We have been told that the Indian rider has suffered a dislocated right shoulder, and is being kept under sedation and close observation at a hospital in Riyadh, on account of the head trauma suffered.
For Stage 6, competitors will cross from Al Qaisumah to Ha'il, covering 448km of competitive riding over a full 100 per cent sandy course. Dakar 2021 moves into full dune territory now, and we expect Stage 6 to be a long day for all.