Sam Sunderland’s defence of his Dakar Rally motorbike crown ended on this year’s first stage as he was taken to hospital with back pain following a crash on Sunday organisers said.
The 33-year-old English GasGas rider came to grief on the 52nd kilometre.
“Conscious and fully mobile, he nevertheless suffers from back pain and was airlifted to Yanbu hospital for further examinations,” read a statement from race organisers Amaury Sport Organisation (ASO).
Sunderland also had to retire from the 2018 edition - a year after he won his first title.
- Al Shabab vs Al Nassr highlights, SHB 2-3 NAS, Saudi Pro League: Talisca brace, Ronaldo strike guide Nassr to win and keep title race alive
- Saudi Pro League: Ronaldo scores milestone goal as Al Nassr edges Al Shabab to keep title race alive
- WPL 2024: Gujarat Giants stumbles to five-wicket loss against Mumbai Indians in low-scoring encounter
- Serie A 2023-24: Late Rugani goal gives Juventus 3-2 win over Frosinone
- Carabao Cup final, CHE vs LIV: Van Dijk nets extra-time winner as Liverpool beats Chelsea