Dakar: HRC Race Report Stage #4 - Copiapó (Video)

2015 HRC Rally Team Dakar race action shot

Honda Racing Corporation Press Release:

Joan Barreda widens the gap at the head of the overall standings on clinching the fourth stage at Dakar 2015. A notable 6th place for Javier Pizzolito of HSA Rally Team, and 8th for Laia Sanz as the rally crosses into Chile.

The Dakar took to the mountains today, the lofty San Francisco pass, at an altitude of 4,800 meters, bearing witness as the riders rode into Chile for the first time. It was also the most extreme stretch of the course encountered so far, with the longest liaison, at 594 kilometers, and temperatures which oscillated from below zero to over 35º. The weary warriors finally earned some rest back at camp in the outskirts of the mining city of Copiapó.

Joan Barreda dictated the pace from meter one. By CP1 he was already ahead, having made short work of yesterday’s winner Mathias Walkner, and closing the gap with arch-rival Marc Coma. The duel was fought nail and tooth throughout the length of the 315 kilometer timed special.

Barreda thus puts yet more distance between himself and the nearest challengers, with a 12'49'' advantage overall. Laia Sanz shone as second of the Team HRC finishers. Relishing the Honda CRF450 RALLY, the Spanish rider stormed to a magnificent 8th place which lifts her to 12th overall.

After a complicated opening, and a slight navigational boo-boo, Paulo Gonçalves managed to claw back a bit of lost time to finish in 12th, but still remains among the leading group. Hélder Rodrigues, was third in the first part of the stage, but finished 17th after a few setbacks.

Jeremías Israel, didn’t get the type of welcome home that he had hoped for. The Chilean suffered a heavy fall at the start of the special, and lost valuable time. Nevertheless, he bravely picked himself up, and even managed to make the finish-line in the top thirty.

Honda South America Rally Team had a splendid day out today with Javier Pizzolito amid the front-runners, taking 6th place. Chilean Daniel Gouet came home in 13th, and now situates himself as the leader of the HSA Rally Team, in 21st on the overall leaderboard.

Dakar Rally Stage #5 Route Shot


STAGE 5 – Thursday, 8th January

Copiapó (CHI) – Antofagasta (CHI)

Liaison: 239 km

Special stage: 458 km

Creating the surprise:

This is the first of the rare special stages in which all categories will compete. At the start of the race, the most confident drivers will be able to take advantage of the fast tracks to try to move up in the overall standings. But the temptation to do so may be risky, particularly in the hard-to-handle fesh-fesh areas where absolute self-control is the only guarantee of success. Overtaking here requires precision handling to the extreme.

Joan Barreda - 1st 3:27'28:

I’m really pleased with today. It was a really fast special and we had to really concentrate hard. I looked up ahead and when I saw it was Marc and not Walker, I really floored it to not let him get away. Everything has worked out really well up until now. To keep up with Marc’s pace and even to take time off him is not easy. But we will continue to try and stay comfortably ahead and not take any chances.

Laia Sanz - 8th + 13'48:

What a great day! It was a really fast stage. But it went very well, especially the part in the sand, which I like. There were a couple of waypoints that were difficult to find, but I managed to. Also, I’m feeling good physically after the really tough second stage. Today I was on form in spite of the difficulties of altitude at the San Francisco pass.

Paulo Goncalves - 12th +14'56:

Today was a really hard day for me. I got lost at kilometer 11, and then, after I had found my way back, I made another mistake at kilometer 124. I dropped a lot of time. When I arrived at refueling, I realized that I was twenty minutes behind. After that I pushed hard and made up a bit of lost time. I managed to keep in the top group in the rally. Tomorrow I’ll try and get a better result.

Dakar Rally 2015 Team HRC Stage 4:

Results Stage 4:

1 BARREDA Joan         SPA     Team HRC     Honda     3:27'28

2 COMA Marc         SPA     KTM Red Bull Rally Factory     KTM     + 1'59

3 QUINTANILLA Pablo         CHI     KTM     KTM     + 2'49

4 VILADOMS Jordi         SPA     KTM Red Bull Rally Factory     KTM     + 10'44

5 FARIA Ruben         POR     KTM Red Bull Rally Factory     KTM     + 10'55

** 6 PIZZOLITO Javier         ARG     Honda South America Rally Team     Honda     + 11'29**

7 DUCLOS Alain         FRA     Sherco Rally Factory     Sherco     + 12'51

** 8 SANZ Laia         SPA     Team HRC     Honda     + 13'48**

9 SVITKO Stefan         SLO     Slovnaft Team     KTM     + 13'51

10 METGE Mickael         FRA     Yamaha Racing     Yamaha     + 14'32

11 BOTTURI Alessandro         ITA     Yamaha Racing     Yamaha     + 14'52

** 12 GONCALVES Paulo         POR     Team HRC     Honda     + 14'56**

13 GOUET Daniel         CHI     Honda South America Rally Team     Honda     + 15'05

14 JAKES Ivan         SLO     Microstep Industry Team     KTM     + 15'30

15 VAN NIEKERK Riaan         RSA     Brother Link KTM Rally     KTM     + 16'17

** 18 RODRIGUES Helder         POR     Team HRC     Honda     + 20'31**

** 27 AZEVEDO Jean         BRA     Honda South America Rally Team     Honda     + 27'53**

** 40 ISRAEL Jeremias         CHI     Team HRC     Honda     + 35'43**

Provisional Standings after Stage 4:

1 BARREDA Joan         SPA     Team HRC     Honda     13:10:33

2 COMA Marc         SPA     KTM Red Bull Rally Factory     KTM     + 12'49

** 3 GONCALVES Paulo         POR     Team HRC     Honda     + 20'29**

4 FARIA Ruben         POR     KTM Red Bull Rally Factory     KTM     + 23'05

5 VILADOMS Jordi         SPA     KTM Red Bull Rally Factory     KTM     + 24'51

6 QUINTANILLA Pablo         CHI     KTM     KTM     + 30'42

7 PRICE Toby         AUS     KTM AUS Rally Factory     KTM     + 32'05

8 WALKNER Mathias         AUT     KTM Red Bull Rally Factory     KTM     + 33'28

9 DUCLOS Alain         FRA     Sherco Rally Factory     Sherco     + 36'31

10 RODRIGUES Helder         POR     Team HRC     Honda     + 39'05

** 12 SANZ Laia         SPA     Team HRC     Honda     + 48'02**

** 18 ISRAEL Jeremias         CHI     Team HRC     Honda     + 54'16**

** 21 GOUET Daniel         CHI     Honda South America Rally Team     Honda     + 1:12'43**

** 29 AZEVEDO Jean         BRA     Honda South America Rally Team     Honda     + 1:48'22**

** 67 PIZZOLITO Javier         ARG     Honda South America Rally Team     Honda     + 4:36'54**

For more information: www.hondaracingcorporation.com