Indian motorcycle racer C.S. Santosh was injured in a crash in the Dakar Rally in Saudi Arabia on Wednesday and put in a medically-induced coma after being airlifted to a hospital in Riyadh.
In a statement released on late Wednesday evening, Hero MotoSports said, “C.S. Santosh is currently receiving treatment at the Saudi German Hospital in Riyadh, after a high-speed crash on Wednesday in Stage 4 of the 2021 Dakar Rally. He has no major physical injuries except for the dislocated right shoulder and head trauma. The latest scans have also shown no major issue that could impact his full recovery.”
It further added, “the medical team attending to him have decided that the best approach to manage the injury is to reduce the body functions to a minimum and keep him in a sedated condition or an artificial coma. He is receiving the best possible medical care and will continue to be under constant observation for the next few days.”
According to reports, he was conscious when paramedics arrived on the scene before he was rushed to Riyadh.
Santosh crashed around 135km into the stage on a gravel track and had to forfeit the stage. This was Santosh's seventh attempt at the Dakar Rally, considered the world's most gruelling off-road motorsport event.
The January 2-16 rally, divided into 12 stages, has competitors traversing 7,646km. Stage 4 is, incidentally, the longest stage of the rally, covering 813km.