Joan Barreda commanded a particularly hazardous fourth stage of the Dakar, Nazca – Arequipa with 289 km of special test, which covered all types of terrain, and was made difficult by the “fesh-fesh” dust. The Spaniard on the Husqvarna TE449RR by Speedbrain battled his way to an eight minute lead over his nearest rival, and managed to come from behind in the process. This is the second win for Barreda and Husqvarna Rallye Team by Speedbrain so far in this Dakar and allows the rider who hails from Castellon to move up to fourth overall place (18th yesterday). Four times Dakar winner Cyril Despres of the Red Bull KTM factory team continued to ride at his own pace in Tuesday’s Stage Four on his KTM 450 Rally bike, sacrificing a few minutes to finish third in the overall standings but saving energy for the long and strenuous ride ahead. Joan Barreda: “I really rode well today. I’m very pleased. I knew it would be a tough one today, so I wanted to push hard. My starting place in twenty-fourth didn’t really favour it especially with the first 20 kms of dust. What’s more, I had the electronic road book broken and I had to move it forward manually throughout the whole stage. I did a perfect stage!”
Despres: “It's not the first time this happens,” he said at the end of the stage. “But don't worry about me, I'm racing my way. I've been riding at a high pace for three days, but not flat out, which helps me to save energy and avoid pushing the motorcycle to the limit. When you start at the back and go like crazy all day long, you ride in the dust, so if you later have mechanical problems, it won't be down to just bad luck... The rally's still long and I ride at my pace!”
Despres may have coasted in after the day’s ride at fifteenth place but he is only three minutes 09 behind the overall leader and feeling comfortable after what was a tough 720 km total ride in Tuesday’s stage. Organizers had planned it to be the reverse of a stage from last year’s edition and it included a tricky 2 km downhill slide in the first third of the special.
American Kurt Caselli finished in seventeenth,
Stage Five takes riders from Arequipa to Arica on the border with Chile over a total distance of 411 km – a liaison of 275 km and 136 km of timed special.
Results Stage Four Nazca to Arequipa total distance 718 km – 429 km liaison and 289 km special 1, Joan Barreda, Spain, Husqvarna three hours 41.09 2, Olivier Pain, France, Yamaha 3:49.32 3, David Casteu, France, Yamaha 3:51.51 4, Gerard Farres Guell, Spain, Honda, 3:52.49 5, Helder Rodrigues, Portugal Honda, 3:52.52 6, Ruben Faria, Portugal KTM 3:53.27 Other KTM 9, Jakub Przygonski, Poland, KTM 3:55.10 11, Riaan Van Niekerk, South Africa, KTM 3:56.16 15, Cyril Despres, France, KTM 3:58.44 17, Kurt Caselli, USA, KTM 3:59.34 18, Chaleco Lopez, Chile, KTM 4:02.45 21, Stefan Svitko, Slovakia, KTM 2:46.52 22, Darryl Curtis, South Africa, KTM 4:03.11 23, Joan Pedrero, Spain, KTM 4:04.51 25, Pal Anders Ullevalseter, Norway, KTM 4:05.30
WARNING: Much of the action depicted in this magazine is potentially dangerous. Virtually all of the riders seen in our photos are experienced experts or professionals. Do not attempt to duplicate any stunts that are beyond your own capabilities. Always wear the appropriate safety gear.
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