Rallye

Lorenzo Santolino takes 2021 Andalucia Rally stage one win

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Stage one winner orenzo Santolino. Photo: Charlie Lopez
Stage one winner orenzo Santolino. Photo: Charlie Lopez

Lorenzo Santolino has taken the opening stage win of the 2021 Andalucia Rally coming in 22 seconds ahead of Joan Barreda and prologue winner Joaquim Rodrigues.

Riders battled tight dusty tracks and high grass with the added obstacle of eye level sunlight to contend with on the 219 kilometres, including 177 against the clock..

Prologue winner Joaquim Rodrigues set off first but a navigational error saw him lose seven minutes. The handed Joan Barreda an opportunity to take the lead, a position he would hold for the remainder of the stage.

While Joan Barreda clocked the fastest time on corrected time it was Lorenzo Santolino who was declared winner by a slender margin of twenty two seconds.

In the overall standings Barreda holds a 22 second lead going into stage two.

Joan Barreda holds a 22 second lead going into stage two. Photo: Charlie Lopez

“This first stage was not very long, but nevertheless a technical one,” Barreda said. “It was tricky. The opening kilometres weren’t easy at all, with very little grip. Also, this year the grass is very high, even on the road, covering the ruts and making them impossible to see. We tried to set a good pace. I also came across some riders who had got lost and were going in the opposite direction, so I tried to take it easy and avoid accidents. Apart from that, everything went well. It was a good stage starting from the opening kilometres.”

Provisional Stage 1 Rankings

  1. Lorenzo Santolino, Sherco Factory Rally Team, 01h 47m 28s
  2. Joan Barreda Bort, Monster Energy Honda Team, +22s
  3. Sebastian Buhler, Hero MotoSports Team Rally, +01m 00s
  4. Franco Caimi, Hero MotoSports Team Rally, +01m 40s
  5. Joaquim Rodrigues, Hero MotoSports Team Rally, +07m 14s

Provisional Overall Rankings after Stage 1

  1. Joan Barreda Bort, Monster Energy Honda Team, 02h 12m 46s
  2. Lorenzo Santolino, Sherco Factory Rally Team, +22s
  3. Sebastian Buhler, Hero MotoSports Team Rally, +42s
  4. Franco Caimi, Hero MotoSports Team Rally, +01m 34s
  5. Joaquim Rodrigues, Hero MotoSports Team Rally, +06m 48s

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