Kevin Benavides of Red Bull KTM Factory Racing has just won the 2023 Dakar Rally under the motorbike category. The event was held from December 31, 2022, to January 15, 2023, spanning a total of 14 stages across Saudi Arabia.
After winning the penultimate stage, Benavides was only 12 seconds behind his teammate Toby Price. The finale seemed like a relatively simple sprint, but the mixed terrain of gravel, sand, and dry-lake beds proved to be quite the challenge.
“After around 5,000km and over 40 hours of racing, to have them so close is unheard of, and the whole team did an amazing job to get them here in this position,” said KTM motorsport director Pit Beirer. “What it came down to was basically a motocross race for 130km. Both riders did an amazing job, and even though you can only have one winner, I’m hugely proud of them both, as the pressure was really on today.”
The consistency of Benavides saw him place within the top 10 at the end of each day throughout the two weeks. Ultimately, the Argentinian emerged victorious—only 43 seconds ahead of his teammate. What a feat!