Today turned out to be a rough day for everyone, not least for yesterday’s stage winner Paulo Gonçalves, who finished the third stage of the Atacama Rally with a respectable time.

Team HRC were presented with a tough task today in a 240 kilometre Dakar-style desert trek in Atacama. The roadbook featured some arduous navigation as riders went in search of more than 60 waypoints.

Paulo Gonçalves had to contend with a pack of adversaries in hot pursuit over the Copiapó dunes. The rivals were attacking from the more favourable position of having the Portuguese out front opening the track. Paulo got the first special off to a fine start, setting a storming pace until kilometre 30 where he began to concede. Nevertheless, a notable effort meant that damage was limited by the time the riders finally crossed the finish-line.

Fellow Team HRC rider, Chilean Jeremías ‘Jere’ Israel, on a dual mission of honing navigational skills and clocking up the maximum mileage before the next Dakar, was also clearly starting to feel more at ease astride the Honda CRF450 RALLY.

The fourth date of the Atacama Rally will take the competitors to Huasco, with a total route of 378.44 kilometres including 273 against the clock.

Paulo Goncalves

STAGE: 5th OVERALL: 11th

Today was a really difficult stage. I opened the track with a really complicated stage in the dunes. At kilometre 30 I got over-confident and strayed away from a waypoint and to mark it I had to climb some really complicated dunes. When I found it and got back on to the right path I saw that some riders had already gone past, but there were tracks everywhere and I had difficulty following them. It was a really hard day for navigation. I think that I did pretty well even with a waypoint that didn’t seem to correspond, but I arrived having done it all. The bike worked well and we will keep pushing over the next couple of days.

Jeremias Israel

STAGE: 8th OVERALL: 8th

Today was a better day for me, above all, because I felt much more comfortable on the bike. I was more confident and able to keep up a higher pace throughout the race. I made a couple of navigational errors, but I think that it was a day where my confidence picked up and I’m pleased about that. I hope that it goes well for Paulo over the next couple of days and we finish the race well.

Private: Wolfgang Fischer

Team HRC Team Manager

Today’s stage was the Copiapo loop, mainly in the sand dunes, so it was a very tough stage. It was also a typical Dakar-style stage on hard terrain with a lot of navigation and a lot of open desert. It was very good practice. Paulo did a great job opening the track without losing so much time and he had a good experience with the navigation. Also, Jere didn’t miss any waypoints and made the most out of the day. Today’s results are not yet definitive but it looks like some riders will have penalties coming through for missed waypoints due to the tricky navigation. Let’s take the results as they come after the jury meeting and we’ll see how the starting order is for tomorrow. Two days to go and we will try our best to improve day by day.

2015 Cross Countries Rally
Stage Round 5 , Stage 3   Chile

Results Stage 3 - Updated by penalties

Pos. Rider Num Nation Team Constructor Time/Gap
1 Viladoms Jordi 11 SPA Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM 3:11'12
2 Price Toby 8 AUS Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM + 6'33
3 Goncalves Paulo POR Team HRC Honda + 9'18
4 Prohens Felipe CHI Team Hermanos Prohens KTM + 10'18
5 Quintanilla Pablo CHI KTM Warsaw Rally Team KTM + 12'01
6 Sunderland Sam 1 GBR Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM + 12'49
7 Gouet Daniel CHI KTM KTM + 13'08
8 Walkner Matthias AUT Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM + 14'18
9 Albalooshi Mohammed 76 UAE Duust Rally Team KTM + 15'12
10 Israel Jeremias CHI Team HRC Honda + 18'29
2015 Cross Countries Rally
Stage Round 5 , Stage 3   Chile

Provisional Standings after Stage 3 - Updated by penalties

Pos. Rider Num Nation Team Constructor Time/Gap
1 Quintanilla Pablo CHI KTM Warsaw Rally Team KTM 6:33'10
2 Walkner Matthias AUT Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM + 00'45
3 Sunderland Sam 1 GBR Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM + 2'29
4 Gouet Daniel CHI KTM KTM + 19'38
5 Viladoms Jordi 11 SPA Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM + 23'32
6 Prohens Felipe CHI Team Hermanos Prohens KTM + 32'07
7 Cornejo José Ignacio CHI XRaids Suzuki + 43'06
8 Albalooshi Mohammed 76 UAE Duust Rally Team KTM + 45'24
9 Israel Jeremias CHI Team HRC Honda + 49'13
10 Goncalves Paulo POR Team HRC Honda + 51:38
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