Rallye

Barreda increases Dakar Lead As Rodrigues Claims His First Stage Win of 2015

Toby Price Moves to 5th After 2nd Place Result On Stage 6

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Discreet since the start of the 2015 Dakar Rally in Buenos Aires, Helder Rodrigues is still capable of a major feat, as he demonstrated with his five previous stage victories on in previous years.

This figure moved up to six this evening in Iquique, after a great day for the Portuguese rider. Ultra-consistent and ambitious, Helder Rodrigues has always fallen short when looking for outright victory on the Dakar, despite two podium finishes (in 2011 and 2012) The South American rally-raid did not seem to be smiling on him either in 2015, with so far a 10th place in the general standings which is below his expectations.

However, after a 318-km special perfectly negotiated this Friday by the Portuguese rider, he now climbs to 6th in the general standings.

‰ÛÏI started very badly with my body at the beginning of this rally." Rodrigues explained. "I had three days that were not so good. On day four I had a problem with the bike due to mechanical problems, but today I had a good stage.

"Of course, I'm happy and I have one week more to attack. I'm happy. If have the best time, that's good. If I have the second time, it's also good. I had a good day and rode very fast. I pushed a lot until I saw Marc and Joan and then I just rode to the finish and didn't push anymore‰Û
Toby Price moved back inside the top five overall with a second place finish on Stage six - Credit: RallyZone
Rodrigues sits just 2 minutes and 20 seconds behind Australian Toby Price in the overall classification who was the runner-up on overnight. Price participating in his first Dakar, demonstrated a good turn of speed and also navigational talent.

"It's a good day. I think at the moment I'm sitting in second." Price said after he completed the stage.

"I didn't think I'd be up there that close. I almost missed a way point and had to turn around and go back and find it. Then every time I came to a cap heading I just stopped and recalibrated everything to make sure I was heading the right way to make sure I got through it fairly smoothly. I've come away with a pretty good time. It's a little bit surprising.

"It's good, though; we had a good run through there, no crashes and I kept the bike on two wheels and that's the main thing." Price continued. "Now we're here for day six and it's the rest day tomorrow so we're looking forward to that.

"Some days I'm struggling with the navigation and other days like today I've done well. I thought that the navigation would have been really hard today, so I just took my time with it and made sure I didn't make mistakes. It's come out fairly well so we're pretty happy with that. It's definitely a good job so far.

"For my first Dakar it's good to be up there at the pointy end of the field. It gives you a little bit of a dust-free run and it kind of makes me learn the navigation a bit more. You don't have any tracks to follow and you've got to make sure you do it right yourself. So, it's good practice, but I'm sure somewhere along the way again next week I'll make another mistake and have another bad day, but it's all part of the learning curve.

"We're enjoying it and loving the race and all the fans that are coming out to watch - it's unreal." Price concluded
Paulo Goncalves finished third on stage and holds down third place overall
Paulo Gon̤alves is used to good performances on the Dakar and finally clawed back time on the Barreda/Coma duo, finishing just 1 minute and 42 seconds behind the day's winner. The incisive Honda rider strengthened his third place in the general standings, waiting to ambush the men ahead. Local boy Pablo Quintanilla is also ready to take advantage of any mistakes and finished fourth in Iquique.

Race leader Joan Barreda and second place Marc Coma again rode the stage together after a minor fall by the KTM rider at the start of the special. This time it was the turn of general standings leader Barreda to take two minutes from his countryman. This battle of the elite will not involve Jordi Viladoms, whose hopes definitively went up in smoke as he finished 35 minutes behind the day's winner.

Aussies Llewelly Sullivan-Pavey and Simon Pavey both completed stage six and are currently ranked 73rd and 75th as the race closes in on the half way point. Unfortunately it looks as though Clayton Jacobsen has had to abandon the race. At this point in time timing is showing he was not able to complete stage five on Thursday.
Joan Barreda increased his overall lead from 10 minutes to 12 and a half minutes despite finishing stage 6 in 6th position.
Stage 6 Results:
1. HELDER RODRIGUES(PRT) - HONDA CRF450RALLY 3h40m10s
2. TOBY PRICE(AUS) - KTM 450 RALLY REPLICA +00:01:10
3. PAULO GONCALVES(PRT) - HONDA CRF450RALLY +00:01:42
4. PABLO QUINTANILLA(CHL) - KTM 450 RALLY REPLICA +00:06:11
5. STEFAN SVITKO(SVK) - KTM 450 RALLY REPLICA +00:06:42
6. JOAN BARREDA BORT(ESP) - HONDA CRF450RALLY +00:07:20
7. MARC COMA(ESP) - KTM 450 RALLY REPLICA +00:09:14
8. RUBEN FARIA(PRT) - KTM 450 RALLY REPLICA +00:09:34
9. IVAN JAKES(SVK) - KTM 450 RALLY REPLICA +00:13:59
10. PATRICIO CABRERA(CHL) - KAWASAKI KXF 450 +00:14:04
91. SIMON PAVEY(AUS) - KTM 450 RALLY REPLICA +03:08:44
93. LLEWELLYN SULLIVAN-PAVEY(AUS) - KTM 450 RALLYE +03:14:04


Stage 6 - Car/Bike - Stage Summary... by Dakar

2015 Dakar Standings After Stage Six:
1. JOAN BARREDA BORT(ESP) - HONDA CRF450RALLY 21h38m35s
2. MARC COMA(ESP) - KTM 450 RALLY REPLICA +00:12:27
3. PAULO GONCALVES(PRT) - HONDA CRF450RALLY +00:17:12
4. PABLO QUINTANILLA(CHL) - KTM 450 RALLY REPLICA +00:29:57
5. TOBY PRICE(AUS) - KTM 450 RALLY REPLICA +00:33:44
6. HELDER RODRIGUES(PRT) - HONDA CRF450RALLY +00:36:04
7. RUBEN FARIA(PRT) - KTM 450 RALLY REPLICA +00:40:27
8. STEFAN SVITKO(SVK) - KTM 450 RALLY REPLICA +00:41:27
9. ALAIN DUCLOS(FRA) - SHERCO TVS RTR 450 +00:52:56
10. DAVID CASTEU(FRA) - KTM 450 RALLY +01:14:52
73. LLEWELLYN SULLIVAN-PAVEY(AUS) - KTM 450 RALLYE +09:52:53
75. SIMON PAVEY(AUS) - KTM 450 RALLY REPLICA +10:10:07

Top Image: Helder Rodrigues claimed his first stage victory of the 2015 Dakar Rally

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