Monster Energy Honda Team rider Paulo GonÌ¤alves, was also riding like a bat out of hell, taking second spot on the day and second overall as the Dakar 2017 leader board begins to take shape.
"We had a really quick part against the clock, filled with a lot of dangers such as animals crossing the track," GonÌ¤alves said. "I‰Ûªm pleased for the Monster Energy Honda Team: all the riders have arrived safe and in one piece, without having taken any risks; that is the important thing as the race has barely started."
Following a well-calculated plan of attack, Yamaha WR450F mounted Xavier de Soultrait claimed an impressive third place result on today's stage two.
"Things are going great for me so far. Today we got a proper taste of the Dakar with a hard and hot special stage," de Soultrait said. "There were lots of animals in the special and it was just so easy to get distracted. I pushed hard from the start but quickly realised I was maybe taking one too many risks. At one point I reached Ivan Cervantes and followed him for a little while. I think I lost something like a minute there but it helped me recalculate my priorities for the rest of the stage. I'm excited with my third place finish on today's stage. I'm now fourth overall so I have to remain 100% focused on each day and each stage from now on."