The break in Riyadh appears to have benefited the Monster Energy Honda Team riders – as can be seen in the seventh stage results – with riders bound for the Saudi Arabian capital and the new Al Dawadimi bivouac. Chilean ‘Nacho’ Cornejo won today’s stage with Barreda the third fastest.

To kick off the second and decisive week of racing, the opening kilometres of the seventh stage – after a liaison section – were battled out over fast tracks, some peppered with stones, followed by a hundred kilometres of dunes. There was plenty of sand and navigation in store over the timed 402 kilometres which took in valleys featuring some parallel tracks that proved the undoing of more than one rider.

Young Chilean José Ignacio ‘Nacho’ Cornejo took advantage of a good starting position this morning to set a lightning pace throughout the stage. With the terrain in optimal conditions, the rider from Iquique registered the quickest times at almost every waypoint en route, reaching the finish-line with the top marker after taking three-and-a-half hours to complete the special. Nacho now lies in ninth in the general standings, 26’37” behind the leader.

Joan Barreda once again pulled off an epic performance and was able to finish the stage amongst the frontrunners in spite of a shoulder injury – an arduous feat given the demanding terrain. Bang Bang reached Al Dawadimi to the applause of the entire Monster Energy Honda Team, gritting his teeth throughout the entire stage, with surprising speed, to eventually post third. The Spaniard now occupies seventh in the Dakar, 8’30” behind the leader.

A positive stage not only for Cornejo and Barreda, but also for Ricky Brabec and Pablo Quintanilla. In addition to pulling back precious minutes in the general standings, their starting positions for tomorrow’s stage will allow a more gung-ho approach as they attempt to claw back even more time in the rankings. On the day Ricky finished seventh and Pablo eleventh, with the pair now holding thirteenth and sixth respectively.

Tomorrow’s stage

With a total of 830 kilometres by the end of the day, tomorrow will be the lengthiest stage of the 2022 Dakar Rally. After setting off the Al Dawadimi bivouac, there will be a liaison to reach the start of the special. Awaiting will be “just” 395 kilometres of special stage with a lot of sand and dunes through the valleys of the south of the country, arriving at the Wadi Ad-Dawasir bivouac after another very long liaison by road.

Ricky Brabec 2

STAGE: 7th OVERALL: 12th

It was a good day for the team. It was long and rocky, but it was good. Some mistakes by other drivers allowed Pablo and I to open the last part of the special. It was a good team effort. We made up a good amount of time and we just have to keep pushing. The results are crazy, there are five days left and hopefully we can stay this strong and make it to the finish line. I'm outside the top ten, but I'm keeping my fingers crossed that I can get on the podium in Jeddah.

Pablo Quintanilla 7

STAGE: 11th OVERALL: 6th

It was a very good day for the team, and I want to congratulate Nacho for the stage victory. For me, personally, it was a good day to pull back some minutes in the overall standings. It was not easy. After refuelling I realised that Sam and Mathias were lost and we took the opportunity to attack. The navigation was super-complicated and the roads were not visible, so we had to be very precise with the distances. I didn't lose much time and I made up a few minutes on the guys in front. I'm very pleased.

José Ignacio Cornejo 11

STAGE: 1st OVERALL: 9th

Today was a good day. I started from a nice position, so I hoped to take the opportunity to attack, make up some time in the general classification and maybe even the stage victory. In the end, I achieved both of them. I tried to stay calm, to keep my concentration and not get lost with the navigation and that’s the way it worked out. I'm happy for my fourth victory in the Dakar, the first of this 2022. The bitter taste of the first days is behind us and we are highly motivated for the week to come. We will fight until the end.

Joan Barreda 88

STAGE: 3rd OVERALL: 7th

I tried to start with some pace. At the beginning it was hard, with a rocky terrain that made me suffer a lot. I got a bit stiff when I was forcing my arms until I was able to relax a bit more in the faster sections. From the 100th kilometre onwards, I was able to push. I realised that the harder I pushed, the more confident I felt physically. I had some good feelings and I couldn’t have asked for anything better considering all I’ve been through.

2022 Dakar
Stage   Dakar

Results Stage 7 -RallyGP-

Pos. Rider Num Nation Team Constructor Time/Gap
1 Cornejo José Ignacio 11 CHI Monster Energy Honda Team Honda 03:28'46
2 Benavides Kevin 1 ARG Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +00:00'44
3 Barreda Joan 88 SPA Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +00:02'51
4 Benavides Luciano 77 ARG Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing Husqvarna +00:07'50
5 Santolino Lorenzo 15 SPA Sherco TVS Rally Factory Sherco +00:08'29
6 Rodrigues Joaquim 27 POR Hero Motorsports Team Rally Hero +00:08'57
7 Brabec Ricky 2 USA Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +00:09'49
8 Short Andrew 29 USA Monster Energy Yamaha Rally Team Yamaha +00:10'15
9 Price Toby 18 AUS Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +00:10'37
10 Van Beveren Adrien 42 FRA Monster Energy Yamaha Rally Team Yamaha +00:12'34
11 Quintanilla Pablo 7 CHI Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +00:12'49
12 Evan Branch Ross 16 BWA Monster Energy Yamaha Rally Team Yamaha +00:13'04
13 Svitko Stefan 142 SLO Slovnaft Rally Team KTM +00:16'06
14 Giemza Maciej 22 POL Orlen Team KTM +00:17'06
15 Gonçalves Rui 19 POR Sherco TVS Rally Factory Sherco +00:17'23
2022 Dakar
Stage   Dakar

Provisional Standings after Stage 7 -RallyGP-

Pos. Rider Num Nation Team Constructor Time/Gap
1 Van Beveren Adrien 42 FRA Monster Energy Yamaha Rally Team Yamaha 23:45'02
2 Walkner Matthias 52 AUT Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +00:05'12
3 Benavides Kevin 1 ARG Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +00:05'23
4 Sunderland Sam 3 GBR Gas Gas Factory Team Gas Gas +00:05'38
5 Santolino Lorenzo 15 SPA Sherco TVS Rally Factory Sherco +00:06'34
6 Quintanilla Pablo 7 CHI Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +00:08'15
7 Barreda Joan 88 SPA Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +00:08'33
8 Svitko Stefan 142 SLO Slovnaft Rally Team KTM +00:20'18
9 Cornejo José Ignacio 11 CHI Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +00:26'37
10 Short Andrew 29 USA Monster Energy Yamaha Rally Team Yamaha +00:28'10
12 Brabec Ricky 2 USA Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +00:38'52

Highlights Stage 7 Rally Dakar 2022

Location Information

Dakar in Saudi From 2020

Records

Dakar 2020 winner Ricky Brabec (Honda)
Dakar 2021 winner Kevin Benavides (Honda)