The rally raid odyssey of over 7,500km that was the 2020 Dakar Rally is over. Competitors across five categories were pushed to the limit over 12 stages on unforgiving terrain, as the iconic event swapped South America for this year's inaugural race in Saudi Arabia.
With first time winners and multi-time champions celebrating, it's safe to say anyone involved with this epic adventure should be enjoying a moment of celebration after the end of the grueling Dakar. Find out the final standings and who the winners were in the five categories in this year's Dakar Rally.
Toby Price ends his Dakar in 3rd as Ricky Brabec crowned Bike champ
Honda's Ricky Brabec had led the 2020 Dakar Rally since Stage 3 and came home in second place on Stage 12 to win the Bike class for the first time by 16m 26s from Pablo Quintanilla, with Red Bull KTM's Toby Price rounding out the podium 24m 6s behind the new champion.
Husqvarna's Quintanilla was the first biker to hit Stage 12 and opened the road with a slim 8m 30s margin over Price in the fight for second place overall, as José Ignacio Cornejo went through 69km with the fastest time, five seconds ahead of Brabec – the American proving he wasn't in protection mode.
In fact, Brabec increased his pace with seemingly little interest in coasting to the finish and posted the fastest time 119km into the stage, leading team-mate Ignacio Cornejo by 18 seconds, as both Quintanillia and Price finished the stage to confirm provisional second and third place respectively.
Brabec completed the final stage in second place, 53 seconds behind Honda team-mate Cornejo, to become the first American motorcycle rider to win the Dakar Rally and also end KTM's 18-year win-streak in the race.
Dakar Rally 2020 Bike standings (after Stage 12)
- Ricky Brabec (USA) 40h 2m 36s
- Pablo Quintanilla (CHI) +16m 26s
- Toby Price (AUS) +24m 6s
- Jose Ignacio Cornejo (CHI) +31m 43s
- Matthias Walkner (AUT) +29m 53s
Carlos Sainz claims his third Car crown in Saudi Arabia
Heading into Friday's finale, MINI's Carlos Sainz started the day with a 10-minute cushion over Toyota’s Nasser Al-Attiyah and the Spanish champion drove cleanly to the finish line to secure his third Dakar Rally title, as Al-Attiyah managed to fend off Sainz's team-mate Stéphane Peterhansel to hold on to second place overall from the French driver.
With Stage 12 shortened to 167km as a result of construction works at an oil facility near the course, Al-Attiyah managed to resist a challenge from Saudi driver Yasir Seaidan, who trailed the Qatari driver by just nine seconds at the 69km mark
The anticipated battle for second place overall between Al-Attiyah and Peterhansel looked to be a non-event 119km into the stage, as second placed Al-Attiyah, determined to win a stage and not complete a Dakar Rally without a stage win for the first time in 12 years, opened up a sizeable margin.
2019 champion Al-Attiyah was the first driver to finish today's special, gaining 3m 56s on Peterhansel and finishing the race in second place, meaning 13-time winner Peterhansel had to settle for third in his 31st Dakar.
Sainz finished the stage in sixth to end his victorious campaign over six minutes clear of Al-Attiyah and become a three-time winner, with four stage wins also to his name after 5,000km of competition across the Saudi desert.
Dakar Rally 2020 Car standings (after Stage 12)
- Carlos Sainz (ESP) 42h 59m 17s
- Nasser Al-Attiyah (QAT) +6m 21s
- Stéphane Peterhansel (FRA) +9m 58s
- Yazeed Al Rajhi (SAU) +49m 10s
- Giniel De Villiers (ZAF) +1h 7m 9s
Casey Currie ends Dakar with a convincing SSV win
Red Bull Off-Road Team USA ended an impressive Dakar debut with another top three finish for Blade Hildebrand, who finished the final stage of the 2020 Dakar Rally just 24 seconds behind Reinaldo Varela, as Casey Currie won the SSV class overall.
Hildebrand, racing under Dakar Experience rules since his withdrawal on Stage 2 has really proved to be a new Dakar talent and looked determined to finish the race with another stage win. The American was over one minute faster than second place overall driver, Sergey Karyakin, at 69km and less than 30 seconds off the overall leader, Varela.
After struggling throughout the 2020 Dakar, 2018 champion Varela bounced back to finish the rally on a high note and take his second stage win by 24 seconds over Hildebrand. Currie, racing in his second Dakar, took the big overall prize however by a big margin of 39 minutes over Karyakin.
Dakar Rally 2020 SSV standings (after Stage 12)
- Casey Currie (USA) 53h 25m 52s
- Sergei Kariakin (RUS) +39m 12s
- Francisco López (CHI) +52m36s
- Conrad Rautenbach (ZSA) +1h 12m 19s
- Jose López (ESP) +1h 20m 38s
Ignacio Casale makes it a Dakar hat-trick in Saudi Arabia
Ignacio Casale has led the Dakar Rally since day one of the competition and despite a couple of navigational issues on the latter stages, won his third Quad title by over 18 minutes from Simon Vitse. It was Dakar rookie Arkadiusz Lindner who starred on the final stage, though.
The Polish rising star blazed an early trail on Friday's Stage 12 and posted the fastest time at the 69km point, 12 seconds ahead of Vitse. Meanwhile, Casale was taking it easy with his third Dakar victory in sight and was two minutes down.
Lindner tightened his grip on the stage after 119km, the rookie building a 1m 46s lead over Vitse and Giovanni Enrico,and at the stage end, Linder, who started Stage 12 dead last in the overall standings, 32 hours behind the leader, claimed the closing stage with 1m 21s to spare over Enrico.
Overall leader Casale came home fourth and ended his 2020 Dakar adventure in Saudi Arabia with four stage wins and he now heads home to Chile with three Dakar Rally titles under his belt. Vitse will be content with a solid runner-up finish after two withdrawals in previous years and Polish veteran Rafał Sonik ends his Dakar third overall, a fantastic achievement following a serious injury in 2018.
Dakar Rally 2020 Quad standings (after Stage 12)
- Ignacio Casale (CHI) 52h 04m 39s
- Simon Vitse (FRA) +18m 24s
- Rafał Sonik (POL) +1h 4m 15s
- Manual Andujar (ARG) +3h 30m 16s
- Kamil Wiśniewski (POL) +4 38m 53s
Karginov caps dominant Truck display with 7th stage win
KAMAZ's Andrey Karginov started the final day of the Dakar Rally nearly 40 minutes ahead of team-mate Anton Shibalov and that's pretty much how the standings would stay, with an impressive third overall for MAZ driver Siarhei Viazovich denying KAMAZ a clean sweep of the podium places.
Karginov clearly wasn't content coasting to the finish and blasted through the first 69km with the fastest time, 23 seconds ahead of Shibalov. After 119 km, the Russian headed new second place man, compatriot and team-mate Eduard Nikolaev, by 34 seconds, with Aliaksei Vishneuski just behind.
At the end of Stage 12, Karginov completed his 2020 Dakar with a seventh stage win by two minutes over MAZ driver Vishneuski and the 2014 champion claimed his second Dakar crown with a 42-minute margin over team-mate Shibalov.
Dakar Rally 2020 Truck standings (after Stage 12)
- Andrey Karginov (RUS) 46h 33m 36s
- Anton Shibalov (RUS) +42m 26s
- Siarhei Viazovich (BLR) +2h 4m 42s
- Dmitry Sotnikov (RUS) +2h 55m 28s
- Martin Macik (CZE) +3h 28m 8s
Quotes of the day
It makes the victory even nicer when the battle is so tough. On top of that, I won in a third different car. I'm very proud of that.
"The fight with Carlos (Sainz) and Stéphane (Peterhansel) has been tough. There were three drivers at the front of the race giving it everything to win. Well done to both Carlos and Stéphane, because we were all involved in a great race." – Nasser Al-Attiyah
"It's not the result we came for, but with the two weeks we've had, I'm quite happy to keep my podium streak going. Now, we're going to regroup ahead of Dakar 2021. I'll be back and looking to get the No.1 plate again.
Catch the action from Saudi Arabia with Red Bull TV's Daily Dakar show:
Dakar Daily – Stage 12