First female SA bikers finish Dakar Rally

Date:22 January 2020 Author: Leila Stein Tags:

Two South African women have become the first women from the continent to finish the gruelling Dakar Rally on motorbikes.

Kirsten Landman and Taye Perry made it across the finish line in Saudi Arabia, with Landman coming in 55th out 144 entries and Perry finishing 77th. This is even more impressive because only 93 of the 144 who entered finished the race at all. Landman also scooped the incredible achievement of 3rd woman to cross the finish line.

The race is known for its accidents and fatalities as a result of the incredible distance and conditions those participating race under. This year, Paulo Goncalves from Portugal, tragically lost his life during the race. The longest distance covered can be up to 800 or 900 kilometres in a day.

Landman is no stranger to the risks involved in her sport, after having been in a bad accident in 2013 which left her in a coma for 11 days.

“I had a life-threatening crash in Botswana – and my doctor still can’t believe how I’m still alive,” Landman told Jacaranda FM. “To overcome my fear of speed after the accident, I decided to do the Dakar Rally.”

According to Good Things Guy, Perry was one to watch at the rally and proved herself well.

“Since my very first motorcycle race in 2006, when everything spiralled upwards bike wise and race wise, everything has pointed me in the direction of Dakar…In 2018 I got to a point where I needed to decide fast… so I braved it and told the world I wanted to take on the Dakar. All it took was a conscious decision, and everything is history,” said Taye.

Image: Taye Perry/ Facebook

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