The Atacama Rally is drawing to a close with some thrilling and picturesque stages that have required a high degree of riding dexterity. Team HRC’s Paulo Gonçalves opened the way for most of the fourth stage, coming home in the leading group.

Not for the first time, the camanchaca – the thick morning mist that dominates the desert region of Atacama – led to a delayed start. Riders got away an hour later than the scheduled start-time for safety reasons, for the second day running. The penultimate stage proved to be a demanding affair that included a thirty kilometre area of dunes and some fast track.

Yesterday’s troublesome stage saw some penalizations dished out once rider’s GPSs had been checked by race officials after the race. The leading riders in the special received a twenty minute sanction for missing one of the waypoints which meant that Paulo Gonçalves was reclassified up into third place. Today, the Portuguese rider had a tough time trying to whittle down the gap with race leaders due to the sheer amount of sand in the stage.

It was no pleasure cruise for Jeremias Israel either. The Chilean never really felt right throughout the race and prefered to take it steadily and focus on improving his navigation skills.

Tomorrow will see the final stage of the Atacama Rally with a final special stage of a little over 100 kilometres that comes to a close in La Serena.

Paulo Goncalves

STAGE: 4th OVERALL: 8th

I’m fairly happy with today’s stage. I started from third and by kilometre 40 I was opening the way until almost the end. I’m pleased because I set a great pace and I knew that the riders behind would claw back a bit of time. The important thing is to keep up a good rhythm and navigate well. Everything went perfectly, the bike was impeccable and my navigating was great.

Jeremias Israel

STAGE: 7th OVERALL: 6th

It was a very long stage today. I didn’t really feel that good. I wasn’t expecting it but at least I managed to have a safe ride. There were a lot of hazards – a very swift stage with long tracks at high speeds. I’m happy that we are almost at the end of this Atacama Rally and in one piece. Now we are going to start the hard stretch of training that has to take us to the Dakar in the best possible condition.

Private: Wolfgang Fischer

Team HRC Team Manager

Day four of Atacama Rally. Paulo Goncalves started third but shortly after the start he took over the lead, opening the way for most of the day in a Dakar-style race with everything; sand, fast parts, technical stuff and some navigation. He again showed his consistency, finishing in the top group and doing an excellent job too. He stabilized his position and tried to get as many points as possible before the end. Tomorrow is the last day so we will see where we end up. For Jeremias it was not such a perfect day, he struggled with the navigation, finishing well in the end and is now preparing for tomorrow’s final day.

2015 Cross Countries Rally
Stage Round 5 , 4   Chile

Results Stage 4

Pos. Rider Num Nation Team Constructor Time/Gap
1 Walkner Matthias AUT Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM 3:02'20
2 Quintanilla Pablo CHI KTM Warsaw Rally Team KTM + 3'12
3 Sunderland Sam 5 GBR Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM + 4'30
4 Goncalves Paulo POR Team HRC Honda + 7'31
5 Price Toby AUS Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM + 9'53
6 Viladoms Jordi 11 SPA Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM + 16'35
7 Israel Jeremias CHI Team HRC Honda + 17'05
8 Prohens Felipe CHI Team Hermanos Prohens KTM + 24'00
9 Meo Antoine FRA Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM + 27'58
10 Al Balooshi Mohammed 7 UAE Balooshi Racing KTM UAE KTM + 39'10
2015 Cross Countries Rally
Stage Round 5 , 4   Chile

Provisional Standings after Stage 4

Pos. Rider Num Nation Team Constructor Time/Gap
1 Walkner Matthias AUT Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM 9:16'15
2 Quintanilla Pablo CHI KTM Warsaw Rally Team KTM + 2'27
3 Sunderland Sam 5 GBR Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM + 6'14
4 Viladoms Jordi 11 SPA Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM + 21'37
5 Gouet Daniel CHI KTM KTM + 33'08
6 Israel Jeremias CHI Team HRC Honda + 45'33
7 Prohens Felipe CHI Team Hermanos Prohens KTM + 55'22
8 Goncalves Paulo POR Team HRC Honda + 58'24
9 Al Balooshi Mohammed 7 UAE Balooshi Racing KTM UAE KTM + 1:23'49
10 Cornejo José Ignacio 'Nacho' CHI XRaids Suzuki + 1:26'06
Location Information

This is your invitation to live the Atacama Rally 2017, Third Round of the FIM Cross-Country Rallies World Championship and meeting of the CODASUR-FIA South American Cross-Country Rally Championship. The Atacama 2017 will be unique, traversing the immensity of the Atacama Desert, from the heart of the dunes in Copiapó City… read more.

Copiapó, Chile - View in Google Maps