Speedbrain Husqvarna Rally rider Joan Barrda Bort took a historic victory for the Husqvarna in stage 10 of the 2012 Dakar today. The 28 year old Spaniard who is only competing in his second ever Dakar showed that he had the pace to run and navigate with the very best Rally riders in the world and won the stage after racing with Despres and Coma to win the stage by 1m 32s.
Behind him Dakar legends Cyril Despres and Marc Coma are separated by just 21 seconds in the overall standings after ten days and 2680km of racing. In another fiercly contested stage Coma pulled back vital minutes on his factory KTM team-mate, but the Frenchman still leads the standings with four more days of the epic race remaining.
Despres said: “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 (Coma’s) dust or him in mine, it doesn't change that much.”
Coma added: “It's the tone that's been set for the rally and I think we'll keep on battling until the end. We keep trying to make the difference all the time and the entry into Peru will be decisive. The race will hinge on the smallest of margins. When the performance level is equivalent with the same team and the same bike, it's very difficult, both for him (Despres) and for me. But when it comes to the crunch, it will be entirely up to either one rider or the other.”
It was a good day for Crescent KTM rider Stan Watt who secured his best stage result of the race in 36th place. The Irishman finished 1h 4m 9s behind the stage winner and maintains 41st in the overall standings.
Tobias Younger continued to make good progress finmishing the monster stage in 103rd position on his Desert Rose Racing KTM. He now holds 104th position in the overall standings.
Results Stage 10
1, Joan Barreda Bort, Spain, 4 hours 18:43
2, Marc Coma, Spain, KTM at 1 minutes 32
3, Cyril Despres, France, KTM at 3:39
4, Helder Rodrigues, Portugal, Yamaha at 5:16
5, Jordi Viladoms, Spain, KTM at 8:48
Overall Results after Stage Ten
1, Cyril Despres, France, KTM, 33 hours 7 minutes 39 seconds (15 minutes penalty)
2, Marc Coma, Spain, KTM at 21 seconds (15 minutes penalty)
3, Helder Rodrigues, Portugal, Yamaha at 45:56
4, Jordi Viladoms, Spain, KTM at 1:18:52
5, Stefan Svitko, Slovakia, KTM 1:24:38