Australia’s top 5 Dakar 2023 moments

Toby Price returned to his best in 2023, narrowly missing out on a third Dakar title by just 43 seconds from Argentinian team-mate Kevin Benavides.

While the final result was disappointing for Gold Coast-based Price, it was an incredible return to form for the Red Bull KTM Factory Team rider after the horror of the 2022 Dakar.

Third place in the Prologue stage set the tone for what was to be a strong Dakar performance from Price as he consistently finished in the top five at each stage.
Third place on stage 12 moved Price to the top of the overall standings for the penultimate stage.

Let’s hope this year’s brilliant performance in the Dakar is just the start of many more to come from the Australian superstar

Daniel “Chucky” Sanders was determined to make up for lost time at this year’s Dakar after a serious crash at the 2022 Dakar kept him off the bike for most of the year.
And that’s exactly what he did with a fast start to the race as the Victorian fell all the way in the opening stages.
On the 669km third stage, Sanders’ pace could not be contained as he raced to victory five minutes ahead of American Skyler Howes.
The GoGas driver eased through the dunes as the fastest driver for the second day in a row, taking no time on his way to a stage win.

While a bout of food poisoning on Stage 4 scuppered Sander’s hopes of overall victory, he showed that speed and skill go hand in hand to one day be crowned Dakar champion.

Australians on the podium
Australian motorsport fans had plenty to cheer about on stages 11 and 12, with Dan Sanders and Toby Price taking the top three spots.

Sanders, who had been battling a severe bout of food poisoning earlier in the week, was back to his best at the 427km 11th stage from Shaybah as he took second place a day ahead of countryman Toby Price.

It was more of the same in the next marathon stage during stage 12 with Sanders finishing fast to pass Price to take back-to-back second places, while Price again finished third.

Their results and performances at the 2023 Dakar have prompted Australian fans to hope that another Aussie Dakar champion may not be too far away.

Molly Taylor hard for twelfth place
The 2023 Dakar Rally was indeed a rollercoaster of emotions for Aussie Molly Taylor.
Driving in the T4 Modified Production SSV class for South Racing Can-Am, Taylor hit the finish line on stage 14 to cap off a busy fortnight at the Sands of Saudi Arabia that featured everything from wild weather to crashes and mechanical failures.

Despite all the problems Taylor faced, her talent shone through and she collected five top 10 stages and a personal best of 12th place overall.

Her performance on Stage 8 was a prime example of Taylor’s incredible resilience.
Plagued with braking problems for much of the stage, Molly also had to backtrack after her car was hit by a Toyota Hilux while crossing a sand dune causing damage to the door and loss of parts.
The Sydney native refused to give up as she came home for her best stage result of this year’s race.
Although unable to achieve her goal of finishing in the top ten, Taylor will be full of confidence for her return to the Dakar in 2024.
The Schey Brothers achieved the best placement in their career
Victorian Brothers Peter and Christopher Schey took part in their first Dakar Rally in 2023, competing in the classic class in a 1990 Nissan Terrano.

The Scheyes decided to finish the competition on their first attempt and achieved their goal on Sunday after two grueling weeks.

After some struggles in the early stages, the Schey brothers found their way in week two, breaking through on Stage 7 for their first top 20 finish.

It would prove to be the first of many with the brothers claiming three more top 20 finishes, including 12 personal beststh on the penultimate stage.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *