Aug 16, 2018
2018 Cross-Country Rallies Round FIM-3 , 2
The longest stage in the Atacama Rally, held today in Copiapó, turned out to be a great success for Kevin Benavides behind the bars of the Honda CRF450 RALLY. The Argentinean Monster Energy Honda Team rider set off this morning from first place and proved to be not only unreachable, but also managed to chalk up the day’s fastest time.
This second stage, the longest of the Atacama Rally, with a total of 440.88 kilometres – including 375.91 against the clock – had the start of the special stage delayed due to the usual appearance of the ‘camanchaca’, a dense local fog that kept the security helicopter, which guarantees race safety, firmly grounded. Once the action got underway, it did so over 73 kilometres less than had previously been scheduled, reducing the special to a total of 303 kilometres.
Benavides set a cracking pace on a battle ground of mostly track, but with some off-piste where he was able to really put the Honda CRF450 RALLY through its paces. By the end of the 303 kilometres, the Monster Energy Honda Team rider had opened a one minute margin over the nearest second-placed rival. As a result Benavides now lies 1’53” ahead of Pablo Quintanilla in the general rankings.
American Ricky Brabec was the second quickest of the Monster Energy Honda Team, posting fifth, 3’17” adrift of his team-mate. Paulo Gonçalves and José Ignacio Cornejo both turned out solid performances and will be looking to claw back time from their adversaries over the coming days.
Tomorrow sees the third stage of the Atacama Rally. There will be a timed special of 259.27 kilometres on a day where competitors will cover a total of 335.17 kilometres.
Kevin Benavides 2
STAGE: 1st OVERALL: 1st
Paulo Goncalves 4
STAGE: 8th OVERALL: 7th
Ricky Brabec 15
STAGE: 5th OVERALL: 6th
José Ignacio Cornejo 10
STAGE: 13th OVERALL: 11th
Results Stage 2
Provisional standings after Stage 2
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