The 45th edition of the Dakar Rally, ended with Adria world class partner Red Bull KTM Factory Racing Team winning the motorcycle category, romping home in 1st and 2nd place after a gruelling contest. It was KTM’s 19th win.
For the eleventh year in succession Adria provided support vehicles to the Red Bull KTM Factory Racing Team. KTM sibling brand GasGas rider, Daniel Sanders, was also supported by the Adria motorhome fleet.
Held once again in Saudi Arabia, where sand is the dominant challenge for the riders and their KTM motorcycles. The rally ran from 31.12.22 to 15.1.23 and covered almost 5,000 km of punishing terrain in 14 stages.
The winner was KTM’s Kevin Benavides, the Argentine rider who put in an incredible performance and came in ahead of Australian and fellow KTM rider, Toby Price. It proved to be one of the closest races in the long and dramatic history of the Dakar, with just 44 seconds separating the two competitors and team mates.
Fellow KTM rider, Austrian Matthias Walkner was airlifted to hospital following a crash, which once again illustrated how treacherous the rally can be.
Each of KTM riders get the support of an Adria motorhome, which provides some respite from the conditions and much needed comfort.
The Adria Dakar fleet consists of Sonic, Matrix and Coral XL motorhomes, with a few adaptations for the rally. Each day they race ahead of the riders and set up a basecamp for the team overnight camp. The Coral XL is particularly popular with the KTM team, with its spacious interior and fixed overhead front bed and the large bed at the rear, enabling two riders to share during the rally.
KTM team boss Norbert Stadblauer commented at the finale ‘’It’s been an incredible Dakar, one of the toughest and closest ever. Toby and Kevin were only 12 seconds apart going into the final stage and thankfully both riders performances gave us the 1-2. Incredible. We would like to thank all our partners once again for supporting KTM at the Dakar. We’re already looking forward to the 2024 Dakar!’’.
You can read all about the last ten years of Adria and KTM at the Dakar in Adria Inspirations Magazine, with an exclusive interview with KTM team boss Norbert Stadblauer.