Sense of Direction Fails Aussie Toby Price at Dakar Rally 2018

Aussie two-wheel racer Toby Price has had an interesting Dakar Rally.

He encountered disaster in stage 10, as he and many others lost large chunks of time late in the stage by getting lost.

Do GlobalPositioning Systems not function in South America? Are there no reliable maps?


Price was riding in a group, accompanied by KTM teammate Antoine Meo and Honda’s Kevin Benavides and those three were the pacesetters right up until the last checkpoint.

Could they not have stopped at a filling station and asked for directions?

Pardon us. Men do not stop and ask for directions and there is no room on the motorcycles used in Dakar for wives to supply navigational recommendations.

Things fell apart when the trio followed the incorrect dry riverbed.

To Price’s credit, he came back to win stage 11 to move KTM into third place. Price is himself third in the overall standings, so the 50 minutes he lost in Stage 10 are now in his rearview.

In the bike class, Red Bull KTM rider Matthias Walkner leads second place rider Kevin Benavides by 32 minutes. Price is another seven minutes and 17 seconds behind, so it would be logical to presume that if he can lose 50 minutes by taking the wrong exit, he could make up the deficit is something similar were to happen to Walkner and Benavides.

The 2018 Dakar Rally is due to end in a couple of days, though, so Price had better experience some good fortune in a hurry. There are three stages remaining and if something similar were to happen as did happen in the ninth stage, which was cancelled due to inclement weather.

Price will need to pass Gerard Farres of the Himoinsa Racing team, whom Price trails by less than three minutes and Benavides, who holds nine minutes plus over Price, if Price is to entertain any hopes of a podium finish.

There are still hundreds of kilometres left in the final three stages, but since Price and Walkner both ride for the Red Bull KTM Factory Team, Price may be relegated to a supporting role, along with Antoine Meo.