Posted by Andrew on January 18, 2015

Category: Motorsports

Catalonian rider Marc Coma cruised in to Buenos Aires a hero after he won his fifth Dakar. The 38-year-old equalled the number of titles held by Cyril Despres and one behind another Frenchman, Stephane Peterhansel. He was followed across the line by Paulo Goncalves on his Honda and Australian Toby Price on another KTM. For KTM, it was their 14th Dakar success but with the re-entrance of Honda and Yamaha, each year is getting more and more difficult for the Austrian manufacturer.

Marc Coma, Paul Goncalves and Toby Price after the Dakar Rally

Marc Coma, Paul Goncalves and Toby Price after the Dakar Rally

The 2015 Dakar was a very tough race and a large number of riders and drivers had to withdraw: just 204 vehicles (78 motorcycles, 15 quads, 61 cars and 50 trucks, or 47% of those that started) made it to the finish.

In the motorbike category, it was Marc Coma’ year again. He was able to defend his title ahead rider Paulo Goncalves. The Portugiese rider was neck to neck with the Catalonian, finishing 16:53 behind the KTM rider, which includes 17 minutes worth of penalties.

Coma on his KTM 450 Rally

Coma on his KTM 450 Rally

“I’m happy and proud,” explained Coma. “As usual it was a grueling rally. We had to overcome a problem on the second day that slowed us down a bit in the rankings. So from then on we had to change the strategy a little and push to recover that time. We knew that the marathons would be key stages and they were. I am happy with the team and the people we have around us. This fifth win says a lot about all of us. The level was very high and this also makes the win very valuable.”

“I think the whole team deserves this result, especially after all the hard work that they have done,” said Goncalves. “All that’s needed now is to go one small step further and win the rally. We are well-prepared and on the right track. I’m pleased with the result, and I want to thank the whole team, but most especially my team-mates Joan, Hélder and Jeremias, who were there to help me out in the most delicate moments. If it wasn’t for them I wouldn’t be on the podium here in Dakar.”

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2015 Dakar Rally Overall Results

1. Marc Coma, ESP (KTM) 46:03:49
2. Paulo Goncalves, PRT (Honda) 46:20:42
3. Toby Price, AUS (KTM) 46:27:03
4. Pablo Quintanilla, CHL (KTM) 46:42:27
5. Stefan Svitko, SVK (KTM) 46:48:06
6. Ruben Faria, PRT (KTM) 48:01:39
7. David Casteu, FRA (KTM) 48:04:03
8. Ivan Jakes, SVK (KTM) 48:22:07
9. Laia Sanz, ESP (Honda) 48:28:10
10. Oliver Pain, FRA (Yamaha) 49:12:58

Source: Dakar

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