Dakar Rally – stage 13

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Dakar Rally – stage 13

Injury to ecstasy… Marc Coma has put the finishing touches to a stand out Dakar performance to claim his fourth win in the motorcycle category, having missed the event last

Dakar Rally – stage 13
Injury to ecstasy… Marc Coma has put the finishing touches to a stand out Dakar
performance to claim his fourth win in the motorcycle category, having missed the event
last year through injury. KTM team-mate Jordi Viladoms secures the overall runner-up
result with Oliver Pain (Yamaha) third…
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Marc Coma, the rider who has delivered a flawless performance from the beginning of
the 2014 Dakar, has taken his fourth overall victory at the end of a final stage of this year
event. Coma’s team-mate Jordi Viladoms has achieved his best overall result ever with a
well-deserved second place, 1 h 52’27’ behind Coma. Last year’s winner Despres
finished his first Dakar on a Yamaha just outside the podium, behind teammate Olivier
Pain who earned his best result at the Dakar.

Last year, leader Cyril Despres and his lieutenant Ruben Faria signed an amazing one-
two for the KTM squad. It was with the same team spirit that Marc Coma grabbed his
fourth overall win, escorted on the podium by his faithful lieutenant Jordi Viladoms, who
had already stood at his side when he won in 2006 in 2009.

Coma’s strategy, based on building an insurmountable lead over his rivals in one single
special, has changed little since his last victory in 2011. This time around, it was during
the fourth day of racing, the second part of the marathon stage to Chilecito, where the
comeback kid dealt a devastating blow by toppling Joan Barreda from the lead. At the
same time electronic problems badly effected Cyril Despres’ chances of victory. From
then on, Coma focused on avoiding mistakes, while his rivals suffered more and more
mishaps, mechanical issues and errors… costing them hours in the overall standings.

The first two riders to drop out were those who stood next to Despres on last year’s
podium, Ruben Faria and “Chaleco” López, who were knocked out by falls. Later on,
during stage five, world champion Paolo Gonçalves saw both his Honda and his hopes go
up in flames. At the time, a breath of fresh air from the Sherco camp compensated for all
these disappointments.

After alternating with teammate Juan Pedrero in the top places of the stages, Alain
Duclos looked more and more like a serious podium contender, at least until the rest day.
However, his Sherco’s engine gave in during stage nine after a first scare two days
earlier. Marc Coma was able to spend the last few days riding at his own pace and
keeping an eye on distant pursuer Joan Barreda.

However, after climbing back to within half an hour of Coma due to the leader being
handed a penalty for an engine change, Barreda blew it exactly when it looked like he
had finally learned to be consistent. The animator of this year’s edition and winner of
four stages crumbled on the dunes of Copiapó the day before the finish, conceding over
two hours and slipping to seventh overall.

Meanwhile, Cyril Despres continued Operation Comeback, gaining a few places in the
classification for his troubles. The five-time winner, 12th at the end of stage five and 11th
on the rest day, inched closer and closer to the top until he finished at the gates of the
podium, just behind teammate Olivier Pain.

Yamaha’s one-two in the third and fourth places is followed by an honourable Honda
contingent, with Hélder Rodrigues in fifth, Joan Barreda in seventh and Daniel Gouet in
eighth. Laia Sanz put the cherry on the Catalan take with a highly impressive sixteenth
place, one of the best results achieved by a female rider at the Dakar.

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Provisional result
Dakar 2014, Stage 13:
1. Joan Barreda (ESP, Honda) +01:59:44
2. Olivier Pain (FRA, Yamaha) +00:00:40
3. Helder Rodrigues (PRT, Honda) +00:01:23
4. Juan Pedrero Garcia (ESP, Sherco) +00:01:35
5. Cyril Despres (FRA, Yamaha) 00:02:30
6. Jordi Viladoms (ESP, KTM) +00:03:31
7. Michael Metge (FRA, Yamaha) +00:04:08
8. Daniel Gouet (CHL, Honda) +00:04:17
9. Jakub Przygonski (POL, KTM) +00:05:16
10. David Casteu (FRA, KTM) +00:07:20

Provisional overall standings:
1. Marc Coma (ESP, KTM) 54:50:53 hrs
2. Jordi Viladoms (ESP, KTM) +01:52:27
3. Olivier Pain (FRA, Yamaha) +02:00:03
4. Cyril Despres (FRA, Yamaha) +02:00:38
5. Helder Rodrigues (PRT, Honda) +02:11:09
6. Jakub Przygonski (POL, KTM) +02:31:46
7. Joan Barreda (ESP, Honda) +02:54:01
8. Daniel Gouet (CHL, Honda) +03:10:34
9. Stefan Svitko (SVK, KTM) +03:50:10
10. David Casteu (FRA, KTM) +03:58:09