The penultimate stage of the Morocco Rally has been an ill-fated one for the riders of Team HRC who had been in the running for top positions.
A hazard not marked out in the roadbook put an end to chances for the top-placed Team HRC rider in the Moroccan Rally. Argentine Kevin Benavides set out from first place this morning with distinct podium prospects on the 319 kilometre looping special stage which started and finished in Erfoud.
Benavides opened the track in the first half of the special with a fine display of navigational skills. Unfortunately, a hard fall in the second section left the rider unconscious on the track in an area that had recently been modified and hadn’t been indicated in the roadbook. Australian Toby Price – who the team wish to thank for the gesture – was on hand to help bring the young Argentinean rider around to consciousness. Kevin was eventually able to get back onto the track and finish the special stage at a somewhat slower pace. The rider underwent a medical check-up to make sure he is in good shape.
Paulo Gonçalves lost all chances of an overall victory in Morocco in yesterday’s stage. The rider had started out race leader but twisted a knee while putting his foot down to support the bike in a slower zone. Subsequently he suffered a mechanical setback that the mechanics are still looking into. Today the plucky Portuguese rider braved the start before the knee pain became so intense that it forced him to return to the bivouac. Goncalves has every faith that the recuperation process will be brief and hopes to be able to continue soon with the scheduled training programme.
It was a bad day in the office for Californian Ricky Brabec who was unable to finish the day due to an electrical problem. However, he will start tomorrow’s stage to finish the rally and gain more experience.
Provisional results Stage 4
|1||Walkner Matthias||AUT||KTM Factory Racing Team||KTM||3:38'00|
|2||Sunderland Sam||3||GBR||KTM Factory Racing Team||KTM||+00'16|
|3||Rodrigues Helder||5||POR||Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team||Yamaha||+4'25|
|4||de Soultrait Xavier||FRA||Yamaha Racing||Yamaha||+6'36|
|5||Quintanilla Pablo||CHI||Husqvarna Factory Rally Team||Husqvarna||+6'46|
|6||Renet Pierre-Alexandre||FRA||Husqvarna Factory Rally Team||Husqvarna||+8'13|
|7||Price Toby||AUS||KTM Factory Racing Team||KTM||+9'40|
|8||Van Beveren Adrien||4||FRA||Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team||Yamaha||+11'07|
|9||Svitko Stefan||19||SLO||Slovnaft Team||KTM||+12'32|
|10||Pedrero Joan||SPA||Sherco TVS Rally Factory||Sherco||+12'48|
|11||Metge Adrien||11||FRA||Sherco TVS Rally Factory||Sherco||+18'06|
|12||Botturi Alessandro||ITA||Yamaha Motor Europe||Yamaha||+18'29|
|13||Faggotter Rodney||AUS||Yamaha Racing||Yamaha||+21'33|
|14||Benavides Kevin||7||ARG||Monster Energy Honda Team||Honda||+23'22|
|15||Ivaniutin Aleksandr||RUS||HT Husqvarna Rally Team||Husqvarna||+27'50|
Provisional Standings after Stage 4
|1||Sunderland Sam||3||GBR||KTM Factory Racing Team||KTM||10:35'40|
|2||Price Toby||AUS||KTM Factory Racing Team||KTM||+01'07|
|3||Quintanilla Pablo||CHI||Husqvarna Factory Rally Team||Husqvarna||+15'48|
|4||Rodrigues Helder||5||POR||Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team||Yamaha||+17'17|
|5||de Soultrait Xavier||FRA||Yamaha Racing||Yamaha||+22'50|
|6||Benavides Kevin||7||ARG||Monster Energy Honda Team||Honda||+23'37|
|7||Van Beveren Adrien||4||FRA||Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team||Yamaha||+28'23|
|8||Walkner Matthias||AUT||KTM Factory Racing Team||KTM||+31'20|
|9||Pedrero Joan||SPA||Sherco TVS Rally Factory||Sherco||+32'28|
|10||Renet Pierre-Alexandre||FRA||Husqvarna Factory Rally Team||Husqvarna||+38'43|
Morocco has always been a land of rally raid. The story began in 1982 with the arrival of Paris-Agadir, the first rally raid to run in Morocco. The following year, the rally took the name of ‘Atlas Rally’ and became the flagship rally to the Rally Raids calendar. The Atlas… read more.
|Winner 2018||Toby Price (KTM)|
|Winner 2017||Matthias Walkner (KTM)|
|Winnner 2016||Toby Price (KTM)|
|Winner 2015||Sam Sunderland (KTM)|
|Winner 2014||Marc Coma (KTM)|
|Winner 2013||Paulo Gonçalves (Honda)|
|Winner 2012||Cyril Despres (KTM)|
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