Manuel Andújar Wins This Year’s Dakar Rally in the Quads Class

Manuel Andújar has returned to the top of the podium…

The 27-year-old Argentine four-wheeled motorcycle racer won the 2024 Dakar Rally in the quads class on Friday.

Manuel AndújarThe Yamaha driver finished the last stage in second place, but it was enough to maintain his advantage over French driver Alexandre Giroud.

It’s his second Dakar crown, after winning the title in 2021.

Andújar completed the 7,891 kilometers of the race in an aggregate time of 64 hours, 16 minutes, and 53 seconds, almost eight minutes ahead of Giroud, winner in 2022 and 2023.

The French driver won six of the 12 stages but was unable to match Andújar’s overall pace, who never dropped below third each day. Slovakian Juraj Varga completed the podium, also aboard a Yamaha, albeit over four hours from the lead.

“After two years watching it from home, with accidents and engine failures, I’m thrilled to be back at the top,” said Andújar after the win. “They say the quads class is going away, but this year it was the most competitive. I dedicate this Dakar to Lobos again.”

Argentina is the leading country in Dakar’s quad class. In addition to Andújar’s two titles, Marcos Patronelli (2010, 2013, and 2016), Alejandro Patronelli (2011 and 2012) and Nicolás Cavigliasso (2019) have won the title eight times in total.

In the bikes class, Argentine Kevin Benavides (KTM) finished fourth after winning the last stage to finish 38 minutes behind the winner, American Ricky Brabec (Honda), with Botswana’s Ross Branch (Hero) and France’s Adrien van Bereven (Honda) completing the podium. His brother, Luciano Benavides (Husqvarna), finished seventh.

In the cars class, Spanish rally legend Carlos Sainz (Audi) won his fourth title at the age of 61. The Spaniard, who also won the World Rally Championship in 1990 and 1992, had previously won the Dakar in 2010, 2018 and 2020. Belgium’s Guillaume de Mevius (Toyota) and France’s Sebastian Loeb (Prodrive) completed the podium. Argentine Juan Cruz Yacopini finished 28th aboard a Toyota.