Motorcycle competitor dies on opening day of Dakar Rally in Argentina
January 2, 2012 -- Updated 1836 GMT (0236 HKT)
Argentina motorcyclist Jorge Boero is pictured before the start of the Dakar Rally. He was killed on the first special stage.
- Motorcyclist killed on first stage of Dakar Rally
- Argentine competitor Jorge Martinez Boero dies after fall
- Organizers say he suffered a cardiac arrest
- Boero 21st competitor to die on the rally since 1979
(CNN) -- A motorcycle competitor has died the first stage of this year's Dakar Rally in Argentina Sunday.
Jorge Martinez Boero was only two kilometers from the finish of the 57km special from Mar del Plata to Santa Rosa when he came off his Beta bike with tragic results.
Organizers said the 38-year-old from Argentina, who was taking part in the annual event for the second time, suffered a cardiac arrest after his fall.
He was treated by medical staff within five minutes of the accident, but died on the way to hospital.
In a statement on the official website of the endurance rally, organizers sent their "heartfelt condolences to his family and loved one's."
Boero's death was the 21st involving a competitor during the event, which was started in 1979 as the Paris-Dakar rally.
It finished in the Senegal capital for 29 times until the organizers brought the event to South America in 2009.
This year's event covers 9,000 kilometers and takes in Argentina, Peru and Chile.
Cars, motorcycles and trucks compete in their various categories over a series of grueling special stages on difficult terrain.
Chilean Francisco Lopez won the opening stage of the motorbike section as the Aprilia rider covered the 57km course in 32 minutes 37seconds.
Russia's Leonid Novitzkiy took first in the cars section in a Mini, with NASCAR star Robby Gordon in fifth place in his Hummer.
Part of complete coverage on
Track the buzz of the 2014 Formula One season, race by race, with all the latest social reaction from motorsport experts.
He's the best of the rest -- Daniel Ricciardo has been Formula One's surprise package in the first half of the 2014 season.
July 24, 2014 -- Updated 1135 GMT (1935 HKT)
Formula One is not likely to go hungry in Hungary as master chefs cater in volume for drivers, teams and VIP guests.
July 3, 2014 -- Updated 1443 GMT (2243 HKT)
It's the elephant in the room of Formula One. What's the prognosis legendary driver Michael Schumacher?
May 23, 2014 -- Updated 2310 GMT (0710 HKT)
It stimulates all five senses, creating an unparalleled experience for drivers and fans alike. Take a tour of Monaco with Mark Webber.
May 22, 2014 -- Updated 1233 GMT (2033 HKT)
To be a champion you must win a title -- but to become an F1 legend you must win races at Monaco, the calendar's most testing circuit.
May 21, 2014 -- Updated 1459 GMT (2259 HKT)
Caterham F1 reserve driver Alexander Rossi takes you on a tour of the Monaco racing circuit.
May 5, 2014 -- Updated 1238 GMT (2038 HKT)
The Formula One driver transcended his sport and even 20 years after his death, Ayrton Senna commands the adoration of fans worldwide.
May 1, 2014 -- Updated 1500 GMT (2300 HKT)
F1's greatest racer was killed during the San Marino Grand Prix on May 1 1994. The sport hasn't been the same since.
April 30, 2014 -- Updated 1516 GMT (2316 HKT)
Just four F1 drivers turned up to Roland Ratzenberger's funeral after his death during qualifying for the San Marino Grand Prix on April 30 1994.
April 25, 2014 -- Updated 1156 GMT (1956 HKT)
For a championship with a distinctly Iberian streak, it is no surprise that South America should be high on MotoGP's list of territories to conquer.
April 18, 2014 -- Updated 1113 GMT (1913 HKT)
Too weak. Can't handle the pressure. Susie Wolff has heard it all -- but she is determined to become the first female F1 driver in 20 years.
Today's five most popular stories