Red Bull KTM Factory Racing rider, Toby Price put in a sensational performance to finish on the Dakar 2018 podium in third position. Priceís teammate, Matthias Walkner won the event. Quite incredibly, it also gave KTM a 17th consecutive motorcycle class win. Fellow Australianís Rodney Faggotter and Scott Britnell finished in 16th and 61st respectively. Price celebrated in true Australian style by taking a shoey straight from his boot!
Given Price was in a race against time to be prepared for this yearís rally, a year on from injuring himself in the previous Dakar Rally, it was a great ride by the Australian. He did everything he possibly could to try and hunt down the leaders, after suffering navigational issues earlier in the rally that cost him plenty of time. He even managed to take out the final stage on his way to a third-place finish. Soon after taking the podium, Price already has eyes set on a 2019 victory.
Price saying; ďThe final stage is over and it went really well. Iím happy to get to the finish line, that was always the main goal right from the start. I tried to push today to make up the time on Kevin (Benavides) but halfway through I knew five minutes was just too much and so I just aimed for a safe finish. To finish the Dakar is an achievement in itself, to come away at the end of this yearís race with a podium is unbelievable, especially after the year Iíve had. The whole team have come together and worked so hard, none of us could do it without them. Iíll concentrate on the 2018 season now and try to get a little stronger and come back here next year looking for the top-step.Ē
It was a very successful Dakar outing for fellow Australian, Rodney Faggotter of the Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team. Faggotter finished the final stage on Saturday without any issues. With it he ended his 2018 Dakar Rally adventure with a positive 16th place in the event's final overall standings and finished 19th in stage 14.
Faggotter sharing; "The race is over and I'm happy I crossed the finish line. Today we raced a shorter stage and it all went pretty well for me. The starting order this morning was reversed so we had to pay extra attention when passing riders in front. I am happy with my top 20 result for the day and with my 16th position in the final overall standings. It's been a long two weeks of racing and I'm happy to be here at the finish line. This has been a demanding Dakar so to reach the finish is a feat in itself. I really had a great time racing with the team here in South America."
Scott Britnell also flew the flag for Australia for his Grit Adventures team. He finished 61stoverall. Britnell stated on social media that the event was grueling yet rewarding, even losing as much as nine kilos throughout the duration of the event. He was stoked to be in the game until the end and cross the finish line amongst the other Aussie contenders.
Photos Courtesy of Dakar Rally website.