Dakar motorcycle rider Paulo Goncalves dies after crash

Sergio Lillo
Dakar rider Goncalves dies after crash
Dakar rider Goncalves dies after crash

Veteran motorcycle rider Paulo Goncalves has passed away following a crash on Sunday's seventh stage of the 2020 Dakar Rally in Saudi Arabia.

Goncalves was contesting his 13th Dakar for Indian manufacturer Hero, and was 46th overall when the rally resumed on Sunday following yesterday's rest day.

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During Sunday's 339-mile Riyadh to Wadi Al Dawasir test, the Portuguese rider crashed after 171 miles - in an area that alternated between wavy sand planes and dunes - at 1018am local time.

A medical helicopter was dispatched to the scene, where Goncalves was found unconscious after going into cardiac arrest.

After attempts were made to resuscitate him at the scene, Goncalves was airlifted to Layla Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Goncalves is the first competitor to have died contesting the Dakar since Michal Hernik in 2015.

In the wake of Goncalves's death, his Hero Motorsport Team has decided to withdraw from the remainder of this year's Dakar.

A spokesperson from the team told Autosport: "It's sad, but we all felt that we all need to take some space to grieve our friend and team-mate."

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