French veteran Stephane Peterhansel won the Dakar Rally for a document-extending 14th time on Friday, and his eighth in the automobile class, after a gruelling two months in the Saudi Arabian deserts.

The 55-calendar year-aged X-Raid Mini JCW driver, nicknamed “Mr Dakar” for his unprecedented good results, 1st won the endurance event on a motorcycle in 1991 and switched to automobiles after 5 far more wins on two wheels.

“It is nevertheless the similar emotion … there are no uncomplicated victories on the Dakar,” claimed Peterhansel after a triumph that also designed him the 1st driver to get the rally on 3 continents.

Argentine Kevin Benavides, riding a Honda, turned the 1st South American to get the motorcycle title after the twelfth and remaining stage that ended in Jeddah.

The yearly rally started off in 1978 as a race from Paris to the Senegalese money, Dakar, but moved from Africa for basic safety factors in 2009. It is now held completely in Saudi Arabia after a stint in South The us.

This calendar year was the forty third staging of the event.

Friday’s end was clouded by information of the demise of French newbie rider Pierre Cherpin who had been in an induced coma given that he crashed on the seventh stage.

The 52-calendar year-aged newbie was the 1st fatality of this year’s event. Two motorcycle riders died on the Dakar final January.

Peterhansel, who had led given that the second stage but won only just one of the 12, concluded 14 minutes and fifty one seconds forward of Qatar’s Nasser Al-Attiyah, a 3 situations Dakar winner, in a Toyota.

Spaniard Carlos Sainz, the defending winner and Peterhansel’s teammate, won the remaining stage and concluded 3rd over-all.

“The variation was almost certainly that Nasser designed the 1st error on the prologue. He won the prologue and I feel it was his 1st error. He almost certainly missing the Dakar for the reason that he preferred to get the prologue,” claimed Peterhansel.

By winning the Jan. two prologue, Al-Attiyah had to go 1st on stage just one and open the road for those behind. He missing 12 minutes.

In the motorcycle course, 2020 winner Ricky Brabec of the United States won the remaining stage to end runner-up to team mate Benavides and finish Honda’s 1st just one-two Dakar end given that 1987.

Britain’s Sam Sunderland, the 2017 winner, concluded 3rd over-all for KTM.

“On stage 5 I was fearful, for the reason that I crashed so speedy and strike my head and my ankle and felt a great deal of suffering. On that day I claimed perhaps the Dakar is concluded for me. But I continued pushing,” claimed Benavides.

“I nevertheless have some suffering, but at the minute I am far more delighted than in suffering.”

Manuel Andujar designed it an Argentine double with victory in the quadbike course.

Russian Dmitry Sotnikov took his 1st title in the truck class, won by the Kamaz team for the fifth calendar year in a row.

(Reporting by Alan Baldwin in London Modifying by Robert Birsel, Alison Williams and Toby Davis)