On Thursday and Friday's stages, cars and trucks swapped special stages with motorcycles and quads. That is why the motorcyclists and quad riders competing on the route torn up by trucks had great difficulty in passing the section. Several dangerous accidents have occurred.

 

“Yesterday, from the very beginning, motorcyclists and quad drivers were aware that it would be difficult and dangerous to ride after the cars and trucks that had covered this section the day before. But we didn't expect that much. After the first 100 kilometres, we arrived at the refuelling point and several competitors started to protest and demand that the stage be cancelled. There were also some top competitors, such as the winners of previous Dakar Rallys,” Maciej Giemza reported.

 

Dakar Rally organizers put competitors' lives at risk

 

“Our security was nonexistent. It's a known fact that everyone came here to race and no one is going to take the gas off until the organizer warns us about something. In my opinion, today our lives were in great danger. Therefore, the organizer cancelled the rest of the episode after our requests. Hopefully,” Giemza added.

 

As the Orlen Team motorcyclist stressed, many competitors had accidents, some of them serious.

 

“As early as the third kilometre, Yamaha rider, Ross Branch had a serious accident and was taken away by helicopter. Not by his mistake. It's just that after the cars and trucks went by yesterday, the route was so broken up that a spot that was described in the roadbook with no exclamation points made such a breach that there should have been two there. If we, while navigating, do not see two exclamation points, we do not slow down. I suspect he also started braking at the last moment and crossed over with the motorcycle. It was one big chaos. They should never drive around trucks. They previously did this in 2018 and there were many protests. I don't know why they repeated it.”

 

Giemza admitted that although he was driving peacefully, he did not feel safe.

 

“I was very careful not to run into anything. I didn't have any subliminal moments, while there were plenty of opportunities for tipping. All the riders I talked to felt a tremendous amount of stress on this episode, really tremendous,” he added