History Maker Sunderland Looking for Dakar Rally Victory Repeat in 2018


Credit: Kin Marcin/Red Bull Content Pool

Sam Sunderland heads into the 2018 Dakar Rally aiming to add his name to the history books once more, with the British rider looking for a second consecutive victory in the legendary event.

Riding once more with KTM, was involve in the championship battle in the FIM Cross-Country Rallies World Championship in 2017 before a small injury ruined his chances in the season finale, but he is now fighting fit and ready to take his new KTM 450 RALLY bike to battle in the Dakar this week.

Sunderland became the first Briton to take victory in the Dakar Rally twelve months ago, and after a positive first outing for the KTM 450 RALLY bike in Morocco late last year in which team-mate Matthias Walkner was victorious, he has high hopes of a second consecutive victory in South America.

“I am feeling really positive,” said Sunderland on KTM.com. “I’m feeling really fast and strong on the new 450 – my fitness is good at the moment and I have no injuries.

“We have had the final shake down test on the new bike and it went very well. There’s always a lot of work and preparation in the last couple of months on the run up to Dakar. Trying to balance all the factors of testing, training and travelling always makes for a busy time before Dakar.

“Now I would like to be able to reward the team for all their hard work with a good result, which is what I’m working towards. We were able to do that at the bike’s first outing in Morocco when Matthias [Walkner] took the win. Everyone in the team is focused on Dakar.”