Salta turned out in force to welcome the participants of the Dakar to Argentinean soil; in particular local boy and Monster Energy Honda Team member Kevin Benavides. With the special stage cancelled today, riders had to complete the link section by road from Tupiza, Bolivia to Salta, Argentina.

Today there was no stage nine to ride in the 2018 Dakar. The organization yesterday decided to annul the final special stage to be disputed on Bolivian soil after heavy flooding and swollen rivers wreaked havoc in the area. The riders and assistant vehicles nevertheless had to complete the 520-kilometre stretch which separates the camps at Tupiza, Bolivia and Salta, Argentina.

Kevin Benavides, the first ever Argentine to win a Dakar motorcycle stage (in 2016) as well as the first to occupy overall top-spot, was greeted with a hero’s welcome. Benavides, second overall, along with Monster Energy Honda Team team-mates, Joan Barreda (fifth), Ricky Brabec (eighth), and José Ignacio Cornejo (fourteenth) arrived together at the bivouac located in the Palacio de Congresos in the capital of the Salta province, where they began the preparations for tomorrow’s important stage.

The tenth stage, which links the bivouacs of Salta and Belén, will feature a total of 797 kilometres, including 424 km against the clock. A crucial sand and dune-filled stage, with a final stint that will require some deft navigation, could prove to be decisive towards the overall results as the race heads into its final days. The final classification of tomorrow’s stage (motorcycles, quad, cars, SSV and trucks) will dictate the starting order of the coming Super-Fiambalá stage, the next marathon stage.

Private: Raul Castells

Monster Energy Honda Team Manager

It is a pity that they decided to suspend today's stage, since all the drivers came here to run the full Dakar, although we understand that, for reasons of rider safety in the race, it could be possible to cancel either part of a special or the entire stage. For the team it has been a good little break, of course, but we are still preparing the following stages as we have done so far: day by day, meticulously while trying to avoid any mistakes.

2018 Dakar
Stage 9   Dakar

Provisional Standings

Pos. Rider Num Nation Team Constructor Time/Gap
1 Van Beveren Adrien 4 FRA Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha 27:22'03
2 Benavides Kevin 47 ARG Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +00'22
3 Walkner Matthias 2 AUT Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +06'34
4 Price Toby 8 AUS Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +07'35
5 Barreda Joan SPA Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +08'01
6 Meo Antoine 19 FRA Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +09'56
7 Svitko Stefan 9 SLO Slovnaft Rally Team KTM +31'55
8 Brabec Ricky 20 USA Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +31'58
9 Farres Gerard 3 SPA Himoinsa Team KTM +37'59
10 Aubert Johnny 40 FRA Gas Gas Racing Gas Gas +01:10'02
15 Cornejo José Ignacio "Nacho" 68 CHI Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +01:33'10

Dakar 2018: Behind The Scene

Dakar 2018: Behind The Scene

Location Information

The greatest and toughest rally in the world, the Dakar’s history has been written in the heart of some of the world’s most stunning deserts and belongs to the world of the greatest sporting challenges of our time. Both a motor race and an orienteering challenge, the Dakar Rally pits… read more.

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