Sam Sunderland KTM 450 RALLY Abu Dhabi 2017

Photo Credit: Marcin Kin

Stage three of the Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge saw Red Bull KTM Factory Racing Team’s Dakar Rally winner Sam Sunderland reclaiming both the stage victory and the overall lead. 

Second home on stage three was Husqvarna’s Pablo Quintanilla with Sunderland’s teammate Matthias Walkner in third place. 

Finishing six minutes ahead of Quintanilla, Sunderland now has a three minute overall lead on the Chilean with two stages to go.

“My start position was more favourable today and I pushed really hard until the refuel stop because I wasn’t really sure about the rhythm of the riders in front of me,” told Sunderland. I only saw the other guys just before the refuelling but I made good time and took back almost 15 minutes.”

Honda’s Paulo Goncalves ended his stage in fourth and slipped to fourth in the overall ranking.

Stage two winner Pela Renet (Husqvarna) was fifth.

Antoine Meo rejoins the KTM factory lineup after a long injury break and he was sixth across the line in the third stage. 

The rally is the opening round of the FIM Cross Country Rallies World Championship.