Common Tread

Video: Beauty and brutality of Dakar

Jan 20, 2017

If you missed the coverage of this year's Dakar rally and just want to see fast motorcycles and dramatic scenery and trying conditions, the rally has put together this highlights video for you. 

It was an eventful year, even by Dakar standards. Last year's winner, Toby Price, broke his leg early and another rider was struck by lightning but still finished the stage. Rain and floods made difficult stages even worse, and forced the cancellation of stage nine when a landslide wiped out part of the town of Volcan in Argentina.

In the end, Sam Sunderland became the first British rider to win the motorcycle class in the Dakar and KTM riders swept the podium again. KTM won the race for the 17th straight year. But that domination was not as great as it appeared. The Honda team was penalized an hour for refueling where they weren't supposed to. Remove that hour penalty and Joan Barreda would have won the Dakar.

South America has proven to be a fitting setting for the rally, providing equal challenges to the old route from Europe and into Africa, and even some new ones. It's still the toughest race.