DAKAR 2021, STAGE 2: BRABEC UP TO SECOND, SHORT DROPS OUT

The second stage of Dakar 2021 once again turned the standings upside down with tricky navigation that penalized those who stared up front. Yesterday’s winner Toby Price was hit especially hard with navigational issues, ultimately losing 32 minutes on the day and dropping from first to 16th overall. Conversely, Joan Barreda and Ricky Brabec who lost big time yesterday, made it all up. The Honda pair finished first and second on the stage and now sit first and second overall. Joan Barreda: “It was a very good stage. We were forced to attack from the very first kilometer until the end and the truth is that it went well. But this is only the second stage of the Dakar and we know that tomorrow it will be difficult starting from the front once again. You have to stay calm, try not to make any mistakes and take it stage by stage.

Ricky Brabec made up most of the time he lost on stage 1 and now sits in second place.

Ricky Brabec: “I didn’t win, but I’m not sure if I want to win a stage for the rest of this Dakar. It bit us hard yesterday. It’s going to be a long Dakar. We are going to do our best each day to finish each and every day. We’re trying to make up time that we lost. We have ten days left. Right now we’re in a good spot. We’ve got to be smart. We’ve got to keep the bike moving fast. Today was really fast. I feel the navigation wasn’t that tricky. It’s a different story when you are opening the stage. My team-mate Kevin found that out today. He’s a solid opener, but he had a couple of issues. He lost time as well as Toby. We are safe and healthy and ready for day three.”

Toby Price: “Overall, I’m happy with how my day has gone. It was always going to be difficult to lead out, but I think that’s going to be the case every day this year. The first 100 kilometers went well, then Kevin (Benavides) caught up and I rode about 150km behind him until he made a mistake, and I took over the lead again. In the later part of the special I had a small issue with the fueling on the bike, which meant I had to ease off a little, but thankfully didn’t lose too much more time. We got caught today by the guys behind, but that was to be expected. Hopefully I can make some of that back again tomorrow in the dunes.”

Andrew Short’s rally came to an end, breaking down early today. “For sure it’s disappointing to end the rally like this as I had a really good stage going. I felt awesome on the bike and things were going well. With Dakar only happening once a year, it’s frustrating to go out like this but I’ll be back next year. I’m thankful to be healthy but sad at the same time as it’s a race that we all work hard towards all year round, but it’s how racing goes sometimes. All the best to my team-mates, it’s going to be a tough race this year.”

Skyler Howes now sits in 8th overall.

Skyler Howes continued to ride well, finishing 11th today and pushing up to 8th overall. “Tough work this morning in the dunes. Didn’t get the flow going until 100km in but by then I had lost a bit of time. Had a great time riding with Luciano Benavides. Hopefully the helicotper got the shot of him sending a dune it was gnarly!  Stoked on the result, happy to take it after a struggle first thing.”

For extended coverage of the 2021 Dakar Rally, click here.

STAGE 2

1 BARREDA Joan 88 SPA Monster Energy Honda Team 04:17’56
2 BRABEC Ricky 1 USA Monster Energy Honda Team +00:03’55
3 QUINTANILLA Pablo 2 CHI Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing +00:06’02
4 EVAN BRANCH Ross 18 BWA Monster Energy Yamaha Rally Team +00:11’54
5 CORNEJO José Ignacio 4 CHI Monster Energy Honda Team +00:12’06
6 VAN BEVEREN Adrien 42 FRA Monster Energy Yamaha Rally Team +00:12’42
7 SVITKO Stefan 11 SLO Slovnaft Team +00:14’15
8 BENAVIDES Luciano 77 ARG Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing +00:15’21
9 SANDERS Daniel 21 AUS Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team +00:16’31
10 DE SOULTRAIT Xavier 12 FRA HT Husqvarna Rally Team +00:17’24

OVERALL AFTER STAGE 2

1 BARREDA Joan 88 SPA Monster Energy Honda Team 08:15’38
2 BRABEC Ricky 1 USA Monster Energy Honda Team +00:06’23
3 EVAN BRANCH Ross 18 BWA Monster Energy Yamaha Rally Team +00:06’37
4 QUINTANILLA Pablo 2 CHI Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing +00:07’16
5 DE SOULTRAIT Xavier 12 FRA HT Husqvarna Rally Team +00:08’25
6 VAN BEVEREN Adrien 42 FRA Monster Energy Yamaha Rally Team +00:08’34
7 BENAVIDES Luciano 77 ARG Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing +00:09’07
8 HOWES Skyler 9 USA BAS DAKAR KTM RACING TEAM +00:09’31
9 SVITKO Stefan 11 SLO Slovnaft Team +00:10’23
10 SANTOLINO Lorenzo 15 SPA Sherco TVS Rally Factory +00:10’51

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