Bengaluru-based CS Santosh had a late crash in Stage 4 of the 2021 Dakar Rally. The Hero MotoSports Team Rally rider suffered an impact to his head but is said to be in a conscious state when the paramedics arrived to him. The rider was taken to the hospital following the crash and is said to be stable, but this also means that he is out of Dakar this year. The news does come as a major disappointment, considering his progress over the first three stages. Santosh was placed 34th in the overall standings when at the start of Stage 4. For now, Santosh has been taken to a hospital in Riyadh for further medical attention.
In an unfortunate incident, @cs_santosh22 suffered a crash in Stage 4 of #Dakar2021 today. He has been taken to a hospital in Riyadh. In the initial assessment, he seems stable.— Hero MotoSports (@hero_motosports) January 6, 2021
Join us in wishing him a speedy recovery. pic.twitter.com/ePbtRIsBcT
Meanwhile, Hero's top rider Joaquim Rodrigues managed to break into the top 10, finishing Stage 4 in sixth place and is now 16th in the overall rankings. Sebastian Buhler showed progressed and finished the stage at P24, and is also 24th in the provisional overall standings.
For Indian Privateer, Harith Noah slipped down to 68th at the end of Stage 4, and is now placed 36th in the general standings. Lastly, Pune's Ashish Raorane showed progress and moved up to 75th place at the end of the stage. He has moved up to P80 in the general standings. In the Malle Moto class, Raorane has moved up a rank and is now placed 19th.
The Dakar Rally remains one of the most challenging motorsport events out there and tests the competitor's strength both mentally and physically. This year though saw the advent of several safety enhancements for moto and quad riders including airbag vests in a bid to improve safety levels for the riders.