he surprise team in this year’s Dakar continues to be the Sherco riders, who captured another stage today. Alain Duclos was the stage winner, and now sits in a very secure third place overall in the standings, just over an hour behind overall leader Marc Coma.

Coma rode another competent stage in the 2014 edition of the Dakar Rally on Friday to complete the first half of this grueling race with a 42.17-minute lead in the overall standings. Coma was second in Stage Six, just one minute 15 behind leader Duclos.

As for the Honda riders, it was a decent day. It was a fourth place finish for Joan Barreda, and sixth for Hélder Rodrigues in this stage, which finished today in the city of Salta, Argentina. Both riders will be poised to attack from good positions when the second part of the rally recommences.
It will be a well-deserved day of rest for the riders at the camp in Salta after six days of some of the most gruelling Dakar to date. It was, once again, a mountain stage full of hard ground, rocks, a lot of dust, some fesh-fesh and a fair share of animals.

Coma, a three times Dakar winner, said later he was content with the stage, which had not been easy. “It is true that we did not have the same extreme conditions of the previous days. This allowed us to tackle the stage in a less demanding way. But in any case, it was still a special 400 km with some navigation and 15 km of extreme enduro, which complicated things quite a lot.”

But for Coma’s factory teammate Chaleco Lopez it was the end of the road for this year’s race. He crashed at a triple caution, a high drop off area, and sustained some wrist and hip injuries, for which he was being treated at the bivouac medical center. 

Results Stage 6 (unofficial) 

1, Alain Duclos, FRA, Sherco at 4 hours 21.34?
2, Marc Coma, ESP, KTM at 1 minute 15 
3, Michael Metge FRA, Yamaha at 1.49
4, Joan Barreda, ESP, Honda at 2.22
5, Cyril Despres, FRA, Yamaha at 2.55

Overall after Stage 6
1, Coma, 23 hours 08.00
2, Barreda at 42.17
3, Duclos at 1:00;58
4, Villadoms at 1:08.09
5, Esquerre, CHI, Speedbrain at 1:33.28


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