Dakar Rally 2023: Hero MotoSport Team Rally Stage 4 update
Stage 4 of the Dakar Rally 2023 in Saudi Arabia was a reminder of why it is called the toughest race in the world, and Hero MotoSport Team Rally riders had a challenging time to tackle the stage. Franco Caimi finished the Stage in 16th position, followed by Sebastian Buhler in 22nd and Ross Branch in 23rd in the Rally GP class. Meanwhile, Joaquim “J-Rod” Rodrigues met with an unfortunate crash that forced him to exit the race.
Dakar Rally 2023 Stage 4
Stage 4 of the Dakar Rally 2023 was a gruelling one to say in the least, with tall sand dunes and tricky navigation through sandy tracks, and J-Rod was the latest in the list of top competitors who exited the Dakar 2023 due to injury. At the 90km mark in Stage 4, J-Rod suffered a fall which rendered him immovable due to a broken left femur. He was airlifted to the hospital in Ha’il by the Dakar medical assistance team, and will undergo surgery. J-Rod’s crash was also psychologically demanding on teammate Franco Caimi, but Franco continued picked up the pace and finished the stage in good time, with 13th position overall in the Rally GP class standings.
It was an even more difficult day for Sebastian Buhler and Ross Branch, with the duo running out of fuel in the 250km-long first part of the stage. Their bikes had technical issues and consumed more fuel than normal. Both Buhler and Branch had to wait a considerable amount of time before receiving help from trailing competitors who lent them fuel to reach the refuelling point. They continued to finish the stage, although their overall ranking did take a hit.