Stage 2Pisco-San Juan de Marcona

  • Barreda Maintains Lead, Brabec Third after Successful Second Stage

    Ricky Brabec set the pace in Stage 2 of the 2019 Dakar Rally to finish 2nd, while Joan Barreda came in 3rd, good enough to maintain his overall lead.

Report

Barreda Maintains Lead, Brabec Third after Successful Second Stage

January 8, 2019


DAKAR RALLY 2019 - Stage 2

DAKAR RALLY 2019 - Behind the Scene Stage 2

Following yesterday's reverse grid start, this second stage was again unique for the bike category for it started off after the cars. Ricky Brabec was the one to set the pace today, finishing 2nd, while Joan Barreda who started out first came in 3rd, securing his overall lead. Kevin Benavides, José Ignacio Cornejo, Paulo Goncalves all finished safely in good positions for tomorrow.


January 8: The 41st Dakar Rally is in its second stage, set between Pisco and San juan de Marcona over a total of 553km. This year's Dakar is relatively short with a total distance of around 5500km to cover, and the fact that it's in a single country, Peru is also a feature. However, the organizers haven't made it easy for the competitors, giving the route a complicated and difficult character, making the Dakar a challenging survival race, as it has always been.


Following the cars, the bikes started off on the 342km Special Stage later than usual in the morning. This was an advantage in the sense they could get an idea of the route by following the cars' tracks, but on the other hand, the drier sand was softer than in the morning making riding more difficult.


This could have been a concern for the riders, but only 20 percent of the route was on dunes, and as most of the route was high-speed sections on solid ground, it turned out that the almost 130 ongoing cars didn't affect the riders as much as expected.

Monster Energy Honda Team Joan Barreda started off ahead due to his stunning stage victory the previous day, followed by Ricky Brabec from 3rd, Kevin Benavides from 8th, José Ignacio Cornejo from 9th, and Paulo Goncalves from 11th positions.

Brabec was the one with speed today, riding along with the defending champion Matthias Walkner (KTM) most of the way and scoring top-times in 7 out of the 8 way-points set on the route. At the end of the day he settled for second place only 22 seconds behind the stage winning Walkner but his fast pace proved he was in top form.

Top-starter Barreda finished 1 minute 41 seconds behind in 3rd position, maintaining his overall lead. Benavides, Cornejo, Goncalves each finished in 8th, 10th and 11th, positioning the Monster Energy Honda Team in a good formation for tomorrow's stage.

Tomorrow's Stage 3 covers a total distance of 798km including a 331km Special Stage. Riders are expected back at the bivouac of Arequipa around 4pm after a long day. Without time to relax, the riders head into the Marathon stages 4 and 5, in which they are not permitted to receive support from their teams. The 10 stages are all full of surprises and challenges, and if it was easy, it wouldn't be the Dakar.

Comments

Ricky Brabec, Stage: 2nd, Overall: 3rd

It was a great stage. Fast tracks, dunes, some fesi-fesi, it was what I'm use to and I felt confident. I had fun riding most of the way with Husqvsrna rider Quintanilla. I have a good feeling for the bike and am confident for the oncoming stages. We can't stay in 3rd. I'm going to try again tomorrow.

Joan Barreda, Stage: 3rd, Overall: 1st

It can be very difficult to start ahead and make all the correct decisions, let alone win the stage, so I'm happy with my position today. At first I was not sure if I can count on the tracks left by the cars and was riding/navigating with care, but later realized I was been caught up so I decided to push ahead and increased the pace. It turned out to be a successful day and I'm in an ideal starting position for tomorrow's long stage.

Kevin Benavides, Stage: 8th, Overall: 8th

Today wasn't a day to attack for positions so I concentrated in holding the position I have and ride carefully and steadily. There were dangerous part where the cars had damaged the route and I didn't feel confident enough to fully open the throttle. The race has only just started. I am ready to attack when I see my opportunity.

José Ignacio Cornejo, Stage: 10th, Overall: 9th

It was a very fast stage. The cars had exposed rocks under the sand in places and it was a rough route. No risks should be taken in these early stages of the rally, so I kept calm to the finish line. Every day is feeling better and I'm looking forward to tomorrow.

Paulo Goncalves, Stage: 11th, Overall: 11th

We started behind the cars on a long stage of over 300km. There were parts with fesi-fesi and a lot of dust but I was able to overtake some cars. I stuck to a safe pace and am happy to finish without any problems.

Taichi Honda, Monster Energy Honda Team Rally Large Project Leader

The second stage is over. The Monster Energy Honda Team is now at the dusty and hot (30 degrees in the daytime) bivouac of San juan de Marcona, preparing for the next stage. Today's stage was a long one with 342km of Special. The route was mainly sandy, high-speed sections and dunes were only 20 percent of the whole distance making it quite a different character to what we faced yesterday. Although having to slow down a little after Way-point 8 due to large clouds of dust from vehicles ahead, Brabec had a very successful day keeping a fast pace throughout the Special, clinching 2nd position and an overall 3rd. Barreda also was consistent, finishing in 3rd and maintaining his overall lead. Benavides secured 8th without taking any risks, while positioning himself in a good place to seek a chance to attack in oncoming stages. Cornejo finished in the top 10 and maintained his overall 9th, while Goncalves is taking care of his physical condition and hanging in amongst the leading group. All the riders are well without any spills so far, and the bikes are also running well so I think we can say we have got off to a good start. Tomorrow's stage is a long one to Arequipa, and the whole team will be on the road by 4am. We will take care of ourselves and the riders the best we can. The Monster Energy Honda Team appreciates your support.

Results

Dakar Rally 2019 Stage 2

Rank Rider (Team)
1 Matthias Walkner (RED BULL KTM FACTORY TEAM)
2 Ricky Brabec (MONSTER ENERGY HONDA TEAM)
3 Joan Barreda (MONSTER ENERGY HONDA TEAM)
4 Toby Price (RED BULL KTM FACTORY TEAM)
5 Pablo Quintanilla (ROCKSTAR ENERGY HUSQVARNA FACTORY RACING)
6 Sam Sunderland (RED BULL KTM FACTORY TEAM)
8 Kevin Benavides (MONSTER ENERGY HONDA TEAM)
10 José Ignacio Cornejo (MONSTER ENERGY HONDA TEAM)
11 Paulo Goncalves (MONSTER ENERGY HONDA TEAM)
18 Walter Nosiglia (MEC HRC)
21 Daniel Nosiglia (MEC HRC)
25 Diego Martin Duplessis (MEC HRC)

Overall

Rank Rider (Team)
1 Joan Barreda (MONSTER ENERGY HONDA TEAM)
2 Matthias Walkner (RED BULL KTM FACTORY TEAM)
3 Ricky Brabec (MONSTER ENERGY HONDA TEAM)
4 Pablo Quintanilla (ROCKSTAR ENERGY HUSQVARNA FACTORY RACING)
5 Toby Price (RED BULL KTM FACTORY TEAM)
6 Sam Sunderland (RED BULL KTM FACTORY TEAM)
8 Kevin Benavides (MONSTER ENERGY HONDA TEAM)
9 José Ignacio Cornejo (MONSTER ENERGY HONDA TEAM)
11 Paulo Goncalves (MONSTER ENERGY HONDA TEAM)
15 Walter Nosiglia (MEC HRC)
21 Daniel Nosiglia (MEC HRC)
29 Diego Martin Duplessis (MEC HRC)

Photos