The Portuguese rider, one of the classics of the race, died this Sunday after suffering an accident in the seventh stage. He is the 29th participant who died in the history of the Dakar
Portuguese rider Paulo Gonçalves, one of the most veteran of the Dakar rally, died this Sunday after suffering an accident in the seventh stage of the race that this year is held in Saudi Arabia. The Portuguese pilot was evacuated by helicopter and taken to a hospital, where they confirmed his death.
Gonçalves suffered an accident with his motorcycle at 276th kilometer of the stage between Riyadh and Wadi ad-Dawasir, the first of the second week of the race. Immediately, the organization mobilized the means to assist him, but it was impossible to save his life.
“The alarm voice was given at 10.08 and the medical helicopter sent by the organizers landed at 10.16 next to the pilot, who lay unconscious with a respiratory stop. After an attempt to resuscitate at the scene of the accident, the pilot has been transported by helicopter to the LAYLA hospital where the fatal news of his death has been confirmed,” explained the Dakar.
Goonçalves, who was 46th in the standings after the first six stages, is one of the classics of the race. This year was his 13th participation. His best result was achieved in 2015 when he finished second overall after Marc Coma. That year he also won a stage. In total, he won four partial victories throughout his career. He also World Raid champion in 2013.
The Portuguese the 29th deceased participant in the history of the Dakar, who has claimed with this 71 total victims related to the race. The first participant to die was the French motorcycle rider Patrice Dodin, who died in 1979 in Niger during the first edition. Until today, the last one had been the Polish Michał Hernik, also a motorcycle rider. He died in 2015 in Argentina.