Toby Price and Daniel Sanders remain in top five after Dakar Rally Stage 2

Australian riders Toby Price and Daniel Sanders have maintained their strong positions in the 2023 Dakar Rally overall standings following Stage 2.

Two-time winner Price finished fifth whilst Sanders came ninth in a stage that saw competitors race for 430 kilometres from the Sea Camp to Al Ula.

The result sees Price sit in second overall, a few spots ahead of his countryman Sanders in fifth.

MORE: Reigning Dakar champion crashes out on opening stage

Stage 2 began with a long stretch of rocky tracks before a short section of dunes challenged riders in the final stages.

Mason Klein picked up the stage victory with a time of five hours and 23 minutes, a significant amount of time more than the forecasted four-hour journey.

The American’s win solidifies his position at the top of the overall standings.

However, the victory could have easily gone the way of Sanders.

The Red Bull GasGas Factory Racing rider was fastest to the 386-kilometre waypoint, leading Klein by a margin of 56 seconds.

Rather than push for the win, the 28-year-old opted to intentionally slow down with the following day’s demanding stage in mind.

“A really big day,” Sanders said.

“It started off really well and made a lot of time up by the first refuel and then at the second one I had a lot of time.

“I decided to slow down a bit because I know that tomorrow is going to be a really tough stage and a big day so I didn’t want to win, even though the opening bonus is in there.

“It’s too early in the race and I thought I would just slow down a bit and have a little picnic again.”

Price also purposely slowed near the conclusion of the stage after a steady and consistent start.

The 35-year-old sits just over two minutes behind Klein in the overall standings as he looks to pick up his third Dakar crown.

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