It might be because I don't understand all the subtle nuances of motorcycle racing, but I can't imagine getting psyched up for a yearly sporting event at the end of which you know you'll be mourning someone's death. The Dakar Rally is an off-road endurance race that today claimed the life of a French motorcyclist named Eric Aubijoux.

This is, unfortunately, not a rare or exceptional occurance. Another guy, South African rider Elmer Symons, died in a crash earlier in the race. Quoting from the AP article, the Dakar Rally "has long been known for its danger to competitors and spectators. Dozens of participants have died in the rally's 29-year history."

Awesome... that sounds like good clean fun for the whole family. I don't know how anxious I could be to win a competition that I'd feel like a prick for celebrating. What's the etiquette in that situation? Do you somberly accept congratulations, and then celebrate privately? Is there an unwritten agreement to kind of ignore the tragedies until after the win has been properly celebrated?

Carlos Sainz of Spain won the next-to-last stage. Congratulations, pal. The death spree ends in a couple of days.


Second motorcyclist dies in Dakar []