A new stage winner emerged from today’s Stage 10 in the Dakar Rally as young Spaniard Joan Barreda rode his Husqvarna to the first Dakar victory of his career, beating both of the factory KTMs of Marc Coma and Cyril Despres in the process.
Barreda, who is now 14th overall, ended the stage one minute and 32 seconds ahead of Coma with Despres another two minutes behind in third as the stage featured 234 miles of racing from Iquique and Arica – the last stage in Chile.
As for the overall standings, Coma gained ground on his rival Despres and the two are separated now by just 21 seconds after 10 stages of the Dakar. Both of the factory KTM riders were hit with a 15-minute penalty today for changing engines, but they are still almost 46 minutes ahead of third placed Helder Rodrigues on his factory Yamaha. Rodrigues was fourth in today’s stage.
Bordone-Ferrari KTM’s Jordi Viladoms is fourth overall – over half an hour behind Rodrigues. KTM-mounted Stefan Svitko is fifth overall.
“It was all going well for me until the 225-km point and I’d managed to keep up a good pace,” overall leader Despres said. “But I made a small navigation mistake and that’s when Marc [Coma] overtook me. He was with Joan Barreda, who I’d like to congratulate on riding a superb stage. At this level, every second counts! It’s a scenario that I thought might happen, so I’m not surprised. I’m just happy to have got through another day. In any case, staying out in front for the whole 377 km while riding flat out isn’t easy. If I finish in his dust or him in mine, it doesn’t change that much.”