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Sam Sunderland hospitalised as crash retires him from Dakar Rally

Sam Sunderland is out of the 2020 Dakar Rally in Saudi Arabia after a crash leaves him with five broken vertebrae and a broken shoulder blade

Sam Sunderland is out of the 2020 Dakar Rally after an accident on Stage 5 in Saudi Arabia left him nursing five broken vertebrae and shoulder blade.

The Briton came into the 2020 edition of the rally classic – being held in Arabia for the first time - chasing his second Dakar Rally win after succeeding in 2017, but his bid ended on the Al-Ula – Hail test when he fell from his KTM.

According to the official Dakar Rally live feed, Sunderland crash at the 187km mark of the special, leaving him with an injured back and left shoulder, necessitating a trip to the hospital.

Sunderland later posted an update on Instagram that explained he’d struck a camel grass mound ‘awkwardly’ which put him out of position for the next one, resulting in him coming off heavily.

“The pain of a crash is nothing compared to the pain of disappointment, unfortunately my race is over after a crash today at kilometre 180.

“While fighting for the stage win and feeling like everything was under control, I caught a camel grass mound awkwardly putting the bike sideways into the next one and a few [cartwheels] later I have 5 broken vertebrae and a shoulder blade but luckily no surgery is required and should be right again soon!

“I want to thank my team for building me the best bike I could ever wish for and for everyone around who help out during the good and the bad moments. Good luck to my team-mates for the rest of the race, put an orange one on the top step!

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

The pain of a crash is nothing compared to the pain of disappointment, unfortunately my race is over after a crash today at kilometre 180, While fighting for the stage win and feeling like everything was under control, I caught a camel grass mound awkwardly putting the bike sideways into the next one and a few later I have 5 broken vertebrae and a shoulder blade but luckily no surgery is required and should be right again soon! I want to thank my team for building me the best bike I could ever wish for and for everyone around who help out during the good and the bad moments. Good luck to my team mates for the rest of the race, put an orange one on the top step! Thank you all for your words of support during the race they help a lot! Also I want to thank @johnnyaubertofficial for stopping to help me when I was crashed

A post shared by Sam Sunderland (@sundersam) on

Sam Sunderland thanks rival for help after crash

Sunderland also extended his gratitude to rival competitor Johnny Aubert, who stopped to help him

“Thank you all for your words of support during the race they help a lot! Also I want to thank @johnnyaubertofficial for stopping to help me when I was crashed.”

The premature exit is a disappointing end to what had been a frustrating Dakar Rally up to this point. The British rider led the way after two stages, but GPS issues on Stage 3 saw him slide back down the order, a margin he’d managed to recover with a provisional win on Stage 4.

However, he was stripped of that win by a five-minute penalty for exceeding speed limits during a neutral section. That dropped him to sixth, 19mins off the leaders with eight stages remaining.

Up at the front, Ricky Brabec continues to command a sizeable lead over the opposition on the Monster Energy Honda, nine minutes clear of KTM’s defending champion Toby Price – winner of Stage 5.

With KTM gunning for its 19th straight Dakar Rally win, the competition remains fierce with Honda’s Kevin Benavides, Husqvarna’s Pablo Quintanilla and Honda’s Jose Ignacio Cornejo Florimo rounding out the top five.

Comments

Grateful he walked away with his life...Not worth a life!
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My name is Jim, and I sell headstones at a monument company. I am wishing for a full and speedy recovery to Sam, and hope he can get back on his bike, should he choose to do so.

Jim from Troy Headstones
https://www.troyheadstones.com/

What's worse than the pain of the injury itself is the pain of not being able to compete anymore. Watching from the sideline a race (or races) that you could've been competing in is the hardest part. https://storage.googleapis.com/fuller-life-counseling/FullerLifeCounseli... https://fullerlifecounseling.blob.core.windows.net/mental-health-service...

You gotta roll with the punches!

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Sam is my fav, he'll be back stronger than ever!

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