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POSITIVE START TO DESAFIO RUTA 40 FOR SUNDERLAND AND SANDERS

RED BULL GASGAS FACTORY RACING PAIR DELIVER STRONG PERFORMANCES ON DAY ONE IN ARGENTINA WITH TOP-10 RESULTS

And just like that, we’re back to rally action! Red Bull GASGAS Factory Racing duo Sam Sunderland and Daniel Sanders came out swinging on stage one of the 2024 Desafio Ruta 40, securing a pair of top-10 results on a tough opening day. Sunderland brought his RX 450F home in eighth place, just under six minutes adrift of the stage winner with teammate Sanders less than a minute further back in ninth.

Faced with the unenviable task of opening the stage in Cordoba after his 17th place prologue result, Sunderland immediately got to work to deliver a mistake-free ride over the 381-kilometer special and ultimately posted the eighth-fastest time. Heading into stage two’s mammoth day in the saddle with 724 kilometers of liaison and timed special to complete tomorrow, the two-time Dakar champion currently lies in ninth overall.

As the 12th fastest rider in yesterday’s prologue, Sanders took the opening stage in his stride today, skillfully navigating the tricky gravel terrain and lingering dust to bring himself home safely in ninth place. Chucky now sits in eighth overall, but he certainly has his eyes on the prize and will be looking to take advantage of his mid-pack start position tomorrow. Bring on stage two!

Sam Sunderland: “Opening the special is always a challenge but I’m quite happy with my day. I enjoyed the challenge but did lose a couple of minutes as a result. Opening for over 400 kilometers isn’t ideal and I came across plenty of animals too! All in all, though, I had a pretty good day and can hopefully up the pace tomorrow and find those improvements. I’m looking forward to it!”

Daniel Sanders: “Today was alright, unfortunately I got stuck in Sam’s dust all day and I couldn’t pass him, so it wasn’t the most comfortable to say the least. The roads were really slippery too and there were so many turns. I couldn’t even keep count! Today was really hard on the tires, so it got pretty loose by the last few tracks and I had to cruise to the end. Hopefully the terrain tomorrow will be a bit different and we’ll see how it goes!”

Provisional Results: Desafio Ruta 40 2024, stage 1
1. Ricky Brabec (Honda) 3:59:37
2. Tosha Schareina (Honda) 3:59:38
3. Adrien Van Beveren (Honda) 4:00:21
8. Sam Sunderland (GASGAS) 4:05:30
9. Daniel Sanders (GASGAS) 4:06:16

Overall Provisional Classification (after stage 1)
1. Tosha Schareina (Honda) 4:16:23
2. Ricky Brabec (Honda) 4:16:24
3. Adrien Van Beveren (Honda) 4:17:52
8. Daniel Sanders (GASGAS) 4:24:02
9. Sam Sunderland (GASGAS) 4:24:13

SAM SUNDERLAND AND DANIEL SANDERS SAFELY THROUGH DESAFIO RUTA 40 STAGE TWO

RED BULL GASGAS FACTORY RACING STARS OVERCOME TOUGH SECOND TIMED SPECIAL IN ARGENTINA

After a long day in the saddle at the Desafio Ruta 40, Red Bull GASGAS Factory Racing's Sam Sunderland and Daniel Sanders have successfully completed the second stage of the Argentinian rally. Sam equaled his opening day result by going eighth-fastest in the challenging timed special, whereas a couple of small mistakes proved costly for Chucky who placed 13th. On to stage three!

Red Bull GASGAS Factory Racing duo easing into return to racing
Sunderland and Sanders rank eighth and 11th respectively in overall standings
Three days left to race at challenging 2024 edition of Desafio Ruta 40
Making the most of his mid-pack start position, Sunderland got straight down to business, tackling the 600-kilometer stage that featured gravel tracks, vast salt pans, and sandy sections head first. Proving that consistency is key, the Brit maintained his pace from day one to bring his RX 450F home to another solid eighth-place finish. Not bad going after well over four hours of racing!

The opening 150 kilometers of the second timed special presented riders with long, winding mountain tracks, making it tricky for Sanders to make up time against his rivals ahead. However, knowing that every stage result counts, Chucky got his head down and delivered a consistent ride to complete the stage in 13th place. The Aussie now looks ahead to Wednesday’s 341-kilometer special and is eager to climb up the leaderboard.

Sam Sunderland: “So that’s day two in the books! The terrain was a bit different to yesterday but a lot rougher, so I’m learning a lot and tried my best to give it my all. We’re a little off the pace at the minute and I’m working with the team to make those key small improvements and build my confidence as much as possible to make up some time. We will keep trying though and we go again tomorrow.”

Daniel Sanders: “It was a long day again here in Argentina. The terrain was pretty difficult with some gnarly long straights and I struggled to find my rhythm at first. I haven’t found the perfect setup for the terrain here yet, but the team and I are working on it together. Wednesday’s stage looks quite different though, so I’m looking forward to the challenge.”

Provisional Results: Desafio Ruta 40 2024, stage 2
1. Adrien Van Beveren (Honda) 4:18:42
2. Skyler Howes (Honda) 4:19:09
3. Sebastien Buhler (HERO) 4:19:51
8. Sam Sunderland (GASGAS) 4:25:26
13. Daniel Sanders (GASGAS) 4:34:41

Overall Provisional Classification (after stage 2)
1. Adrien Van Beveren (Honda) 8:36:34
2. Tosha Schareina (Honda) 8:36:44
3. Ricky Brabec (Honda) 8:38:48
8. Sam Sunderland (GASGAS) 8:49:39
11. Daniel Sanders (GASGAS) 8:59:43

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