There are not many changes in the overall standings at the Desafio Ruta YPF in Argentina after the fourth stage Belén-Belén. Ricky Brabec set once again the pace among the Monster Energy Honda Team riders and was third with one minute and 40 seconds gap to the stage leader Luciano Benavides. His teammate Pablo Quintanilla was in front of the race until kilometer 228 and finished the day in 6th position (4:59 min gap). Adrien Van Beveren completed the 345 km of Special Stage in 8th place (9’:02 min gap) and José Ignacio Cornejo was 9th (11:19 min gap).
In the overall standings, Brabec maintains his third place (23:13 min gap), Van Beveren also keeps his 5th place from yesterday. Quintanilla and Cornejo switch positions and are now 6th and 7th in the overall ranking.
Tomorrow it’s time to do the last efforts in Argentina, with just one more stage to go. There will be 305 km of liaison and 258 km of Special Stage between the cities of Belén and Salta. This time the menu for the riders will be mainly gravel and sand tracks.
Ruben Faria – General Manager : « This was another day in the region of Belén and in my opinion this was the most emblematic stage so far at the Desafio Ruta 40. There was a lot of navigation in the difficult dunes of Fiambala. Ricky did very well during all the stages, he made third but very close to the first. Today Adrien was doing very well in the dunes. Unfortunately he made a mistake in the final part. Nacho is sick and it was a pity because this stage was made for him. Pablo was also fast in many waypoints. We are good and focused. I hope we reach Salta with all riders well ranked. »
Ricky Brabec #2 : « The stage was good, two days ago we did more or less the same round but just in the other direction and then on the second part of the stage was Fiambala where we haven’t been there since the Dakar with its soft dunes. This was a day where opening bonus time made sense. Looking forward to the final day. »
Adrien Van Beveren #42 : « This morning there was a lot of dust in the river bed and I tried to keep safe. In the second part there were a lot of dunes and I pushed hard – I think I was doing good. Just a few kilometres before the end I missed a note on the road book and went too far. Lost some minutes and this made me reflect on the importance of reading the road book. »
Pablo Quintanilla #7 : « This was quite a complete special stage with a difficult navigation with fast tracks with dunes, and stones. I felt good in the first part until the refueling and managed to keep a good pace. Then things changed and I couldn’t maintain the same rhythm. This is not my best race, but we are always learning in such a demanding atmosphere. »
José Ignacio Cornejo #11 : « Stage 4 is done and I did not feel very well. I was quite strange since the morning, I didn’t know what was going on so at the end I was feeling a lot more tired than I used to be. In the liaison back I start getting a fever. I hope to get better for tomorrow so I will be able to finish with a solid stage. »
Provisional Standings after Stage 4
1. Schareina Tosha – SPA – Honda Team, 13:15:26
2. Benavides Luciano – ARG – Husqvarna Factory Racing, 13:21:13
3. Brabec Ricky – USA – Monster Energy Honda Team, 13:38:39
4. Evan Branch Ross – BWA – Hero Motorsports Team Rally, 13:44:49
5. Van Beveren Adrien – FRA – Monster Energy Honda Team, 13:47:54
6. Quintanilla Pablo – CHI – Monster Energy Honda Team, 13:47:54
7. Cornejo José Ignacio – CHI – Monster Energy Honda Team, 13:58:44
8. Cox Bradley – RSA – BAS Dakar KTM Racing Team, 14:17:42
9. Price Toby – AUS – Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team, 14:41:17
10. Dabrowski Konrad – POL – Duust Rally Team, 14:45:42