-- Dakar 2013, 9th Stage, San Miguel de Tucuman – Cordoba / 853 km stage (533
miles) including 593 km special test
Result Stage 9:
1. Despres (FRA, KTM) 5h41m36s
2. Joan Barreda (ESP, Husqvarna Rallye Team by Speedbrain) +00:04:03
3. Alessandro Botturi (ITA, Husqvarna Rallye Team by Speedbrain) +00:05:14
4. Faria (PRT, KTM) +00:07:47
5. Rodrigues (PRT, Honda) + 00:08:47
Overall Standings after nine stages:
1. Faria (PRT, KTM) 25h57m12s
2. Despres (FRA, KTM) +00:05:23
3. Lopez (CHL, KTM) +00:09:03
4. Jakes (SVK, KTM) +00:16:56
5. Alessandro Botturi (ITA, Husqvarna Rallye Team by Speedbrain) +00:22:58
He'd been waiting for a great day ever since the race started in Lima. And today was it! After starting the longest stage of the rally in 11th place, 24′26″ behind the overall leader, Cyril Despres delivered a virtuoso performance throughout the ninth stage, one which was raced on fast trails which put tyres and brakes to the test. The Frenchman went on the attack at the beginning, dosed his effort to preserve his tyres in the second part and then stepped it up again in the finale, grabbing his first win in the 35th edition, which is also his 31st career win, by 4′03″ over his closest rival, Joan Barreda. Despite an early fall, Husqvarna's Spaniard was the only rider who came close to challenging the Frenchman and finished second, 1′11″ ahead of teammate Botturi.
He wasn't the only one to fall, as the Yamahas can tell you! The overall leader in Tucumán, David Casteu, crashed into a cow when tackling a turn 120 km into the special! He set off with a dislocated shoulder, a leaky tank and the beginning of a nightmare stage for the man from Southern France, as he had to stop yet again 15 km before the end of the stage and saw all hopes of salvaging something in the overall go up in smoke. Olivier Pain's performance won't fill the brand with the tuning forks with glee either! The second-in-command of the Bleus also hit the deck several times today, losing about 32′ and slipping to sixth overall. It wasn't a good day for Chaleco López either, as he also took a tumble and lost over 16 minutes to Despres.
This crazy stage turned the overall on its head, with Cyril Despres' water carrier, Portuguese Ruben Faria, taking the lead 5′23″ ahead of his leader! Things just got much easier for the defending champion! Behind them, Chile's Chaleco López is still in third place, 9′06″ down, after a successful damage limitation exercise.
Cyril Despres - "It was a good day with lots of attacking and lots of turns. It would have been impossible for me to do well without my trainer, who makes me work on a bicycle year-round, or without my Michelin tyres. Thanks to them for making my muscles strong and my tyres sturdy. When I get back to the bivouac, I'll be able to check this stage on my list. I knew that it would be physically demanding, that I'd have to give it my all. I've got blisters on my feet and my hands are sore, but I had to bang my fist on the table to say: "Hey, I'm here!". Ruben and I are racing well for the team, he's in good shape and that's the most important thing right now."
Ruben Faria - "A very difficult stage. 851 km is a very long way to go. We went at 90% inside the forest, I don't know how many turns we had to negotiate today. There was a lot of dust, I went at my own pace to avoid taking risks. I really wanted to make it to the finish of this special. I'm keeping my feet on the ground: I'm here to help Cyril win his fifth Dakar, and that's what I'm going to do."
Joan Barreda Bort - "I knew I'd have to try something today. I knew it would be difficult, with many kilometres and hours ahead of me. It was hard to stay focused for so long. In the end, I managed to do so. I had a few scares because the trails in the last part were slippery and the tyres were quite worn out. It was tough to ride safely, but I managed to maintain a strong pace until the finish without making any mistakes. I started a minute late because my motorcycle just wouldn't start. I had to push the envelope and lost yet another minute. Then, I had to stop because of the fairing and lost another minute. All in all, two minutes. The last part was less eventful; I rode without stopping or making any mistakes, and I think the times will end up being more or less the same."
Helder Rodrigues - "Today was a difficult day, even though it didn't require much navigating. It was long, hard on the tyres and hard on the riders. I did a good job without risking too much, because it was dangerous. So I'm happy. The Dakar's still long, anything can happen. So I'll attack until the end to try and get closer to the podium."
-- KTM Report
Red Bull rider Cyril Despres put in a magnificent ride in Monday’s Stage Nine of the Dakar 2013 when it resumed for the second half of this year’s edition. The title-holder won the stage and moved into second overall while his factory teammate Ruben Faria of Portugal took control of the overall lead.
Despres, a multiple winner on KTM machines went out on what was the longest stage of the rally knowing it was time to make an impression. He put his mixed fortunes of previous days behind him and finished the stage in five hours 41.36, three minutes 21 ahead of Joan Barreda of Spain.
With Faria in the lead, Despres now has a fighting chance of defending his title with a deficit of just 5 minutes 23 and many kilometers to go before the finish in Santiago, Chile on January 19. The French rider had a magnificent day out on what was certainly one of the most grueling stages of the rally this year. He left the starting line in the early hours of the morning lying in fifth place overall with a deficit of around 25 minutes, including a penalty of 15 minutes for having changed an engine. That he was able to cut that to just five minutes was a testament to the immense skill and fighting spirit skill of KTM’s four times Dakar winner. Despres went on the attack as soon as he hit the track and fought hard all the way to claim his thirty-first career stage victory.
Despres put his efforts today in part down to his extreme physical fitness but said it was time he made his presence felt. “ It was a good day with lots of attacking and lots of turns. I knew that it would be physically demanding, that I'd have to give it my all. I've got blisters on my feet and my hands are sore, but I had to bang my fist on the table to say: "Hey, I'm here!". Ruben and I are racing well for the team, he's in good shape and that's the most important thing right now.”
KTM rider Chaleco Lopez of Chile, currently third overall managed to finish in tenth place in the stage after a fall cost him valuable time. He is nine minutes 03 adrift from the leader Faria making it a three-way KTM lead at this stage. KTM factory rider Joan Pedrero of Spain finished eighth in the stage, Factory B Team rider Kuba Przygonski of Poland was thirteenth and American Kurt Caselli finished fifteenth, trailing the leader by 25 minutes 37. Caselli who was drafted in to ride for the injured Marc Coma is having a great first ever Dakar but he did pick up a swathe of penalties for missing a checkpoint and several waypoints in Stage eight. KTM Factory Team boss Alex Doringer underlined that Caselli is “here to learn” and said he was doing a great job.
"Tomorrow is another hard and difficult stage with a times special of around 390 km,” said Doringer. "But it won’t be as tough as today’s stage. We’re very happy with how our riders are performing and we’re looking forward to the rest of the rally.”
Condolences on the death of Yamaha personality Jean-Claude Olivier
Meanwhile, KTM Motorsports and the KTM Factory team wishes to extend condolences to the Yamaha Team on the unexpected death in a road accident in France of the legendary Jean Claude Olivier, former manager of the Yamaha France Dakar Team.
Speaking from Austria, KTM’s special advisor and former double MX World Champion and Dakar rider Heinz Kinigadner said Olivier was a big man with a big presence who was very instrumental in making the Dakar Rally what it is today. "Jean-Claude was still competing when I was racing and he had a big influence in shaping how the Dakar Rally has developed,” he said. “JCO” as he was known competed in the first ever Dakar Rally in 1979 and had his best finish in 1985 when he finished second. He was 67 years old at the time of his death.
Stage Ten of the Dakar 2013 takes riders from Cordoba to La Rioja over a distance of 636 km of which 357 is timed special offering new challenges to the KTM factory riders
-- Husky Report
Joan Barreda second and Alessandro Botturi third in Dakar ninth stage.
"Bang Bang" Barreda picked up a precious second place in today’s ninth stage, the longest in the Dakar ’13 covering some 853 km (533 miles) from San Miguel de Tucuman to Cordoba. Barreda set off first this morning and opened the path for the other riders dominating throughout a special test divided into two parts. Despres, starting from further back, was the only competitor to outrun the Husqvarna Rallye Team by Speedbrain rider, winning the special 4’03” ahead of Joan.
Alessandro Botturi too, ran a spectacular race on his TE449RR by Speebrain coming in third right behind team-mate Joan. In doing so Alessandro managed to close the gap, moving up to fifth overall place on the leader-board.
A great day in the office for the Husqvarna Rallye Team by Speedbrain was rounded off with a seventh place for Paulo Goncalves, who also did a fine job in pulling back positions.
Joan Barreda: ”A really tough and dangerous stage. The ground was so slippery that it would have been really easy to fall. I open up the road coming across every type of animal imaginable; cows, horse, birds, and every time I had to slow down to avoid hitting anything. I’m pleased with the second place. With my hand the way it is I couldn’t do any more.”
Alessandro Botturi: "Starting from that far back I was confronted with an incredible amount of dust. I pushed hard from the start and I’m happy with the way that it went. This was my stage. If I had started amongst the leaders, I’d have won the race."
Paulo Goncalves: ”I rode well in the first part and I was, in fact, in fifth place at the end of the first leg. Then it was simply too dangerous to push hard, so I sat back and tried not to make any mistakes.”
Wolfgang Fischer: “Congratulations to our riders for a job well done in this, the longest stage of the rally. We’re really pleased that Alessandro is making ground on the leaders in the overall standings.”
-- HRC Report
After the rest day in Tucuman, Team HRC riders today tackled the longest stage of the Dakar 2013 with a 593-km long special split into 2 timed sections with 122 km of neutralised sector.
Starting second, Johnny Campbell was able to take advantage of the fast tracks followed by a more technical part. He rode with a good consistent pace, finishing the first special in third position behind Despres and Barreda. Despite a small crash at the beginning of the second stage that made him stop to replace the front brake lever, he finished in the top ten.
Team mate Rodrigues was 2nd at the CP1 but lost valuable time finishing 8th at the end of the first special stage, although he was able to recover in the second timed section. With today’s 5th position Helder moves up into 7th position overall, 31’23” behind Faria who leads the general classification.
A difficult day for Javier Pizzolito who was not comfortable on the rocky terrain and preferred not to take too many risks. Finishing 26th overall, the Argentinian rider lost 2 positions and now sits in 12th place overall.
Helder Rodrigues SS9 5th +8’47, 7th overall: “It was a long day, the navigation was not difficult but it was hard for the machine, the tyres and our bodies. I didn’t want to take too many risks as it was quite dangerous out there so I’m happy with my result”.
Johnny Campbell SS9 10th +14’56, 52nd overall: "I was third at the end of the first special but I made a mistake at the beginning of the second stage that spoiled today’s result. I came into a corner too fast and I couldn’t slow down so I lost the bike and I crashed, breaking the front brake lever which I had to replace. My bike was also damaged at the back but I managed to make it to the end, despite the pain in my ribs. Today’s terrain was tough for the machine and the tyres, but our Pirelli tyres worked very well”.
Javier Pizzolito SS9 26th +30’58, 12th overall: “It was a tricky and technical stage especially the rocky section in the mountains and I wasn’t comfortable so I preferred to ride safely and wait for the last part of the stage that had softer ground”.
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