Dakar takes its toll – even if you’re not rid­ing

Motorcycle News (UK) - - This Week - ANDY CAL­TON

From the hushed tones of the per­son sat next to me, I could tell the phonecall he was tak­ing was a dis­turb­ing one.

Im­me­di­ately I feared the worst and tried to lis­ten in. It soon be­came ob­vi­ous that the per­son on the other end was at the Dakar and strug­gling to cope with the sti­fling heat, sleep­less nights and al­ti­tude sick­ness. And that was just from MCN’S Se­nior Re­porter Jor­dan Gib­bons who was cover­ing the event!

Ev­ery­one knows that the Dakar is be­yond tough, but un­til you ac­tu­ally get to see the hu­man suf­fer­ing first hand, or hear from some­one di­rectly who has, it’s hard to un­der­stand just how phys­i­cally and men­tally drain­ing it is. The guys who start the race are brave and tal­ented. A bloke who fin­ishes a stage 122nd would eas­ily kick ass at your lo­cal club’s en­duro or mo­tocross race.

And while the guys at the front are supremely tal­ented and fit, it’s the guys fur­ther back who suf­fer more. They are on the bike for longer and get less sleep. Then there’s the Malle Moto rid­ers who do the whole event solo. Bri­tain’s bravest are do­ing well with Sam Sun­der­land chas­ing over­all honours and Lyn­don Poskitt (above) chal­leng­ing in the Malle Moto class. Fol­low it all with MCN.

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