Dakar Rally: Harith Noah 26th after Stage 8

 Harith Noah.
TVS Racing Factory rider Harith Noah. Photo: IANS

Wadi Ad Dawasir (Saudi Arabia): The lone Indian rider in this year's Dakar Rally, Harith Noah of TVS Racing Factory team, overcame initial hiccups to be placed 26th here on Monday in the overall rankings of the world's most gruelling off-road rally.

He has till now recorded an overall timing of 29 hours 50 minutes and 47 seconds.

In Stage 8, he finished in the 26th position after clocking 4:12.30s.

India's Hero MotoSports Team Rally rider, Joaquim Rodrigues, is placed 15th overall with a timing of 28:36.47s after Stage 8.

Rodrigues finished Stage 8 at the eight spot with an impressive timing of three four and 58 minutes.

Rodrigues' teammate Aaron Mare is placed 17th in the rankings after Stage 8 with a timing of 28:50.28s. He finished the stage in the 21st spot clocking 4:8.19s. The stage was won by Sam Sunderland of Great Britain covering almost 400 km.

Starting at 22nd position from the grid and treading a cautious path for the first 86 km in the long liaisons and action-packed dunes, Noah saw off the trek to southern Saudi Arabia and its tough sands and lost about 10 places.

He progressed later on, even as the minds and bodies of the competitors were put to a hard test.

Eventually, the landscapes changed and the tough negotiator ended the day in a respectable position after traversing a distance of 820 km.

Competing in RallyGP, the premier class of the Moto section in the 44th Dakar Rally, Noah, who had a tough first week due to extreme cold conditions and a couple of falls, has come into his own and is looking forward to the last four stages.

"I enjoyed the stage for the second day running and I am getting into my rhythm. It was a long and tough day but I like tricky navigation like this stage. I am still in the race and glad to be fighting another stage," Noah said.

There are four more stages left in this year's rally that concludes on Friday.

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