Dakar’s day one, en route from the Peruvian capital Lima to the bivouac located around the city of Pisco, consisted of a total of 332 kilometres, with only 84km against the clock was enough to set up the first official race leader board of the 2019 edition of the Dakar Rally. 80% of the route took place in the dunes, on a stage which covered some dried up river beds that were navigationally quite demanding.

1st, Joan Barreda (Honda): “I’m very happy to start like this. Today was a short stage but where everyone went very fast. Without making mistakes I managed to push for the whole of the special. In the beginning it’s always a bit difficult to pick up the rhythm, but from kilometre 20 I started to improve and I was able to maintain a good rhythm during the whole stage with very good results. Now it’s time to think about the long stages where the way of preparing them changes. Tomorrow we will have to stay focused, since the pace will also be high and there is more chance of getting lost.”

Gepostet von HartEnduro.com am Montag, 7. Januar 2019

2nd, Pablo Quintanilla (Husqvarna): “I felt really good on the bike today. It wasn’t an easy stage. There were some sandy dunes, some dusty parts and some tricky navigation. I was pushing from the start and I felt confident all the way through the stage. It’s good to start this race with a second place and it gives me extra confidence for the rest of the rally. Today we had many waypoints to cross and many direction changes. It was good to get things started with the first stage. This year I am feeling very confident and I am enjoying the race a lot. The bike is running great and I am looking forward to the coming stages.”

3rd, Ricky Brabec (Honda): “First stage of this Dakar with some very good sensations. The stage was not very long, but there were many dunes and a lot of people. I have found the whole special went pretty well: there was a bit of fesh-fesh but I’m very happy to be here and am prepared to give it my best shot over the coming days.”

Pablo Quintanilla: “There were some sandy dunes, some dusty parts and some tricky navigation.”

Stage 2 on Tuesday leads 554km from Pisco to San Juan de Marcona, inculding a 342km Special Stage.

2019 Dakar Rally – Stage 1 Provisional Classification
1. Joan Barreda (Honda) 00:57:36
2. Pablo Quintanilla (Husqvarna) 00:59:10
3. Ricky Brabec (Honda) 01:00:28
4. Adrien Van Beveren (Yamaha) 01:00:31
5. Sam Sunderland (KTM) 01:00:32
6. Toby Price (KTM) 01:00:44

STORY: Stage 2 Dakar Win For Matthias Walkner
STORY: Strong Start For KTM On Dakar Stage One
STORY: Pablo Quintanilla And Andrew Short All-Set To Get Things Going at Rally Dakar
STORY: “It’s going to be tough out there…” – KTM Factory Racing @ Dakar
STORY: “We Must Slow Down The Dakar!”

LINK: Honda Racing Corporation
LINK: Husqvarna Motorcycles
LINK: Rally Dakar

photos (c) ASO, A.Lavadinho & HRC & Marcin Kin