As the Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge reaches its mid-point, Monster Energy Honda Team look set to be in the battle for the final podium.
Stage three of the rally returned to the dunes of the Empty Quarter in Abu Dhabi in Al Dhafra desert. The race set off from the bivouac at Qsar al Sarab before starting the 255-kilometre timed special on a sand and dune-filled route.
Today, Pablo Quintanilla battled throughout the stage to keep up with the main group who will eventually be in the fight for the final victory. The rider set a swift pace and reached the finish in fourth place, four minutes behind the day’s winner, leaving him in forth overall spot, four minutes fifty seconds adrift of the leader.
Ricky Brabec also had a noteworthy day, despite starting in fourth place among the group that opened the track. During the second half of the special, the American moved into the head, opening the way, which logically led him to shed time to the rest of the chasing pack. Nevertheless, the American holds fifth in the overall standings, sixt minutes behind the leader.
Nacho Cornejo was able to finish a special that got off to a complicated start. However, he managed to drop just a few minutes which he should be able to make up tomorrow as he will be starting from a rear position.
With the race at its halfway point, tomorrow sees the penultimate stage of the Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge, with a 243-kilometre special stage in the Liwa desert.
Results Stage 3
|1||Walkner Matthias||52||AUT||Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team||KTM||3:24'13|
|2||Sunderland Sam||3||GBR||Gas Gas Factory Team||Gas Gas||+1'01|
|3||Howes Skyler||5||USA||Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing||Husqvarna||+2'30|
|4||Price Toby||18||AUS||Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team||KTM||+4'07|
|5||Quintanilla Pablo||7||CHI||Monster Energy Honda Team||Honda||+4'09|
|6||Rodrigues Joaquim||27||POR||Hero Motorsports Team Rally||Hero||+4'42|
|7||Caimi Franco||6||ARG||Hero Motorsports Team Rally||Hero||+7'17|
|8||Brabec Ricky||2||USA||Monster Energy Honda Team||Honda||+8'35|
|9||Cornejo José Ignacio||11||CHI||Monster Energy Honda Team||Honda||+10'05|
|10||Benavides Kevin||1||ARG||Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team||KTM||+11'14|
Provisional Standings after Stage 3
|1||Sunderland Sam||3||GBR||Gas Gas Factory Team||Gas Gas||11:23'47|
|2||Walkner Matthias||52||AUT||Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team||KTM||+4'24|
|3||Benavides Kevin||1||ARG||Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team||KTM||+4'28|
|4||Quintanilla Pablo||7||CHI||Monster Energy Honda Team||Honda||+4'49|
|5||Brabec Ricky||2||USA||Monster Energy Honda Team||Honda||+6'12|
|6||Price Toby||18||AUS||Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team||KTM||+6'40|
|7||Rodrigues Joaquim||27||POR||Hero Motorsports Team Rally||Hero||+7'42|
|8||Cornejo José Ignacio||11||CHI||Monster Energy Honda Team||Honda||+8'23|
|9||Caimi Franco||6||ARG||Hero Motorsports Team Rally||Hero||+9'56|
|10||Benavides Luciano||77||ARG||Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing||Husqvarna||+16'47|
The erstwhile UAE Desert Challenge, one of the world’s most prestigious international cross country rallies, entered a new era in March 2009 when it was renamed the Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge with the five-day motor sport spectacular being staged in its entirety across Abu Dhabi emirate under the auspices of the Abu… read more.
Abu Dhabi - United Arab Emirates - View in Google Maps
|2021||Matthias Walkner (KTM)|
|2019||Sam Sunderland (KTM)|
|2018||Pablo Quintanilla (Husqvarna)|
|2017||Sam Sunderland (KTM)|
|2016||Toby Price (KTM)|
|2015||Marc Coma (KTM)|
|2014||Paulo Gonçalves (Honda)|