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The Royal Automobile Club honours the first Briton to win the Dakar Rally

Sam Sunderland has been awarded the prestigious Segrave Trophy by the Royal Automobile Club in recognition of him being the first Briton to win the Dakar Rally in 2017.

The rally which began in Asuncion, Paraguay, ran through the vast and rugged terrain of Bolivia and Argentina. The Red Bull KTM Factory Team rider took the lead on the fifth of twelve stages and maintained it to the end, completing the final Argentinian stage 32 minutes ahead of his nearest competitor and fellow team-mate Matthias Walkner to secure the title and deliver KTM its 16th straight Dakar victory. In 2018, Walkner continued this achievement securing KTM its 17th victory in a row.

Upon receiving the Trophy, Sunderland said: ‘I’m absolutely honoured to receive this prestigious award from the Royal Automobile Club. I am so proud to have my name alongside so many of my racing heroes like John Surtees, Barry Sheene and Joey Dunlop. I have huge respect for everyone who has been a part of the Trophy’s history’.

The Segrave Trophy is named after British pilot and pre-war racing driver, Sir Henry Segrave, the first man to hold both land and water speed records. Segrave pushed himself and his machines to the very limit in the pursuit of ultimate speed, therefore the trophy is awarded to the individual who demonstrates ‘outstanding skill, courage and initiative on land, water and in air – the Spirit of Adventure’.

Previously the Segrave Trophy has been awarded to eight motorcycle racers including:

John McGuinness (2016) for his outstanding contribution to motorcycle road and circuit racing, including setting the outright lap record at the 2015 Isle of Man TT. The greatest living exponent of the TT, with 23 victories to his name.
John Surtees CBE (2012), for his outstanding career in two and four wheeled motorsport, including seven motorcycle world championship titles, culminating in the unique achievement of being the only man to win a motorcycle and Formula 1 world championship.
Joey Dunlop OBE (2000 posthumously), in recognition of a career of unrivalled achievement on the Isle of Man TT.
Carl Fogarty MBE (1994) for winning the Superbike World Championship with Ducati.
Steve Webster MBE (1991) for winning his fourth FIM World Sidecar Championship title.
Mike Hailwood MBE GM (1979) for his long career in motorcycle grand prix racing, Formula 1 and his successes in the Isle of Man TT including his last, in 1979, at the age of 39, following a successful comeback to the event after 11 years.
Barry Sheene MBE (1977 and 1984) for his career in motorcycle grand prix racing, including being the only man to win world championship events at every capacity from 50cc to 500cc.
Geoff Duke OBE (1951) for winning the 350cc and 500cc motorcycle world championships and the Senior and Junior Tourist Trophy races in the same year.

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