2024 Dakar Rally stage seven results where Jose Cornejo takes his third stage win of the race as Ricky Brabec and Ross Branch sit one second apart for the race lead.


2024 Dakar Rally Stage 7 in a nutshell – Riyadh > Al Duwadimi , Special: 482km Liaison: 390km

  • Sunday in some parts of the world is supposedly a day of rest. Not so in off-road sport and definitely not at Dakar as competitors got back on with the job after a rest day in Riyadh. Heading in the direction of Mecca (to mix our religious references), the 482 kilometres of special added to over 800km ride in total, for yet another day not designed for the faint-hearted. This really is turning out to be the toughest Dakar since the race landed in Saudi Arabia.
  • With a pack of four riders seemingly set in stone up the top of the timing sheets, is it safe to say Honda’s Ricky Brabec, Jose Cornejo and Adrien Van Beveren, plus Hero Motorsports’ Ross Branch are the only riders fighting for the podium now?   
  • Leading from the front in a group of three for a lot of the special stage, Adrien Van Beveren, Toby Price and the overall race leader Ricky Brabec all accumulated healthy time bonuses for their efforts opening the piste. It didn’t stop them losing a heap of time overall on this long stage – Price and Van Beveren were over 10 minutes off the pace – but the time bonus system helps them massively by halving that disadvantage.
  • It wasn’t an easy day in very mixed terrain (meaning just about everything), plus difficult navigation and plenty to concentrate upon as Van Beveren explains: “The navigation was mind-boggling. I did my best to stay alert. I hung on, but I ended up wandering around the dunes. There was smoke coming out of my head.”
  • Despite having no rear brake for much of the stage, Brabec made good time early to pass and overtake Price and then catch his Honda teammate AVB. The American stuck with it out front and remains leader of the race but by just one second.
  • “All the guys I wanted to beat were behind me,” Ricky said at the stage finish, “so it's been a tough day. I haven't had a rear brake since like kilometre 40 or 50, so it's been a slow day for me but, overall, I'm happy with how the day went. Not probably the result that I wanted to see, but I'm still 100% ready to go, so the next five days is going to be a good one.”
  • Starting from fifth place this morning, Ross Branch is still very much in this to win it. The Hero Motorsports rider is having his best Dakar, certainly Hero’s best, and keep tabs on the Hondas around him with a calculated ride.
  • All of this despite saying it was a day he’d rather forget! “It was a tough day, one of the days I’d rather forget. We had a few technical issues early on in the stage, so it was really frustrating and I made a lot of mistakes. There were so many dangers and I was really riding on the limit.”
  • Nacho Cornejo took advantage of a later start time after suffering an early start number on stage 6A. The HRC pilot retakes third place in the standings from teammate Van Beveren as the pair play that see-saw game between them, winning one day, then losing time opening the next. Brabec and Branch are playing it cooler.
  • Starting from sixth and seventh this morning, the Benavides brothers seem down in the dumps at times this Dakar, no doubt as the reality of their positions relative to the race leaders hits home. They tried their best today, with the elder brother an ’23 Dakar winner Kevin initially taking second before landing three minutes for speeding, relegating him to third just behind Luciano.
  • Here’s the blunt truth: both of them, along with Price and Daniel Sanders, seemingly cannot make inroads on the race leaders and that’s why these guys are not going to make the podium this year. It’s harsh but they ain’t closing the gaps and the guys out front are managing it.
  • After long-time leader Romain Dumontier ran out of fuel on the “Chrono” stage and lost a heap of time, Jean Loup Lepan lead the standings in the B-class moto category. But Lepan had a tough time of it today, losing 15 minutes due to an engine change did not help while Dumontier clawed back time to finish second behind Mathieu Doveze. Dumontier is back in the lead Rally 2 form Lepan and Harith Noah third.
  • After coming a cropper big time (as she might say) on stage 6B, Jane Daniels was back on it today and finished 52nd, despite being one of 13 riders to swallow an additional 15 minutes for an engine change today. Jane sits just outside the top-50 overall. 

2024 Dakar Rally Stage 7 results:



Provisional overall classification after stage 7, RallyGP:


Provisional overall classification after stage 7, Rally 2:


dakar_rally_classification_after_stage_7_rally2_3  dakar_rally_classification_after_stage_7_rally-2_4



Photo Credit: Honda Racing + A.S.O. | F. Le Floc'h | DPPI + Rally Zone