Desafio Ruta 40 Monster Honda Stage 3: A mixed stage with a difficult start

Today Ricky Brabec was once again the fastest Monster Energy Honda Team rider during the third stage from the Desafio Ruta YPF in Argentina. The American was third 1’52” behind Tosha Schareina – who is also riding an Honda CRF 450 Rally – at the end of the stage reaching Belén. The Spaniard was one more time at the front of the field during the 265 km Special Section. In consequence, Brabec also climbs into third place overall.

In today’s Special Stage Adrien Van Beveren was 7th, José Ignacio Cornejo finished 8th and Pablo Quintanilla returned to Belén closing the Top 10.

In the overall standings, Brabec gets into third place (22:01 min gap), Van Beveren is in 5th place (24:02 min gap), Cornejo in 6th place (32:25 min gap) and Quintanilla in 7’th place (33:30 min gap).

Tomorrow the race will repeat the circuit scheme as today with the start and arrival in Belén. This time there will be 234 km of liaison and 345 km of Special Stage. The fourth and penultimate stage will mix once again gravel, sand tracks and dunes.

Ruben Faria – General Manager : « This was another day in the region of Belén, quite a mixed stage with a difficult start with some navigation and dunes at the beginning. Ricky did a great stage and his third place allowed him to climb into 3rd overall. Adrien today did not feel comfortable and was a bit late – also due to a navigation mistake at the end. Nacho made a predictable stage and Pablo today did not feel comfortable. Tomorrow we will continue fighting and this will be the rule until we reach Salta. »

Ricky Brabec #2 : « The stage was good, started out more physically than the others which is nice because it was chilly this morning so we were able to get warmed up pretty quick. This stage was really fast, a lot faster than I remember so it looks like we won the stage but then the bonus time kicked in and I think I am still third. I am feeling good. I am already looking forward to going home, it’s two more days and we will be out of here. The goal is to go back in one piece! »

José Ignacio Cornejo #11 : « I am done with stage 3, it was fun to ride since we had a little bit of everything with fast piste and river beds. It was not the outcome I expected. I am happy with my Honda CRF 450 Rally and I will continue to fight the best way I can day by day. »

Adrien Van Beveren #42 : « This was not such an easy day for me, I tried my best and I could not find a really fast rhythm. I was feeling good, but the guys in front were pushing more. I need to get confidence in these river beds, it’s not my favorite terrain but the bike is working well and I felt ok. Now let’s focus on the next few days. »

Pablo Quintanilla #7 : « This was not a good day for me, since I did not feel comfortable on the bike. Now I just need to rest and keep my mind clear to face another day. Like I always do I will give my best in every stage until the end of the race. »

Rider Standings
Provisional Standings after Stage 3
1. Schareina Tosha – SPA – Honda Team, 10:20:53
2. Benavides Luciano – ARG – Husqvarna Factory Racing, 10:27:16
3. Brabec Ricky – USA – Monster Energy Honda Team, 10:42:56
4. Evan Branch Ross – BWA – Hero Motorsports Team Rally, 10:43:29
5. Van Beveren Adrien – FRA – Monster Energy Honda Team, 10:44:55
6. Cornejo José Ignacio – CHI – Monster Energy Honda Team, 10:53:28
7. Quintanilla Pablo – CHI – Monster Energy Honda Team, 10:54:23
8. Bühler Sebastian – POR – Hero Motorsports Team Rally, 10:56:45
9. Cox Bradley – RSA – BAS Dakar KTM Racing Team, 11:09:53
10. Dabrowski Konrad – POL – Duust Rally Team, 11:34:05