Tragic news emerged from the Dakar Rally earlier today, as it was confirmed that Paulo Goncalves has passed away following a significant fall. The FIM released the following statement confirming the news.
It is with immense sadness that we inform you of the death of Portuguese rider Paulo Gonçalves this morning during Dakar seventh stage.
He has passed away from a fall sustained 276 kilometres into today’s special. The organisers received an alert at 10:08 and dispatched a medical helicopter that reached the biker at 10:16 and found him unconscious after going into cardiac arrest. Following resuscitation efforts in situ, the competitor was taken by helicopter to Layla Hospital where he was sadly pronounced dead.
40-year-old Paulo Gonçalves was taking part in his thirteenth Dakar. He made his debut in 2006 and had finished four times in the top ten, including an impressive performance as runner-up to Marc Coma in 2015. Paulo Gonçalves, the 2013 FIM Cross-Country rallies World Champion, was sitting in forty-sixth place overall after stage six of the 2020 Dakar.
On behalf of the FIM family the president, Jorge Viegas, extends its deepest condolences to Paulo’s Family, the Amaury Sport Organisation (A.S.O.), the Portuguese Motorcycling Federation, the entire Dakar caravan and his many friends.
Words: Press Release | Lead Image: Honda Racing Corporation