There are pilots who have no idea loosen. Joan Barreda (Torreblanca, Castellón; 37 years outdated) is one of these drivers. Skilled in motocross, his nice ardour, he disputes his eleventh Dakar this yr. And never even wanting to have the ability to surrender stage victory yesterday. As they learn.
The Honda, who had began in 17th place this Friday after navigation difficulties the day earlier than to open the observe because the winner of Wednesday’s stage, got here on the assault from probably the most backward positions. His preliminary intention was not solely to win, however, above all, to chop minutes from his rivals in a stage that was anticipated to be robust, lengthy and with difficulties, each technical, with many dunes, and navigation. Nevertheless it was not like that. Thursday’s day, through which it was particularly tough to seek out the right route, left so many automobiles stranded between the dunes – many spent the night time within the desert – that the group determined to delay the departure of the pilots from the bivouac in Al Qaisumah in an hour and a half. And likewise to shorten yesterday’s stage by 100 kilometers.
With the particular smoothed out, Barreda, all the time very quick, determined as he approached the end line that it might be preferable to surrender the victory to 1 of his rivals to keep away from having to re-open the observe within the subsequent timed take a look at. So he stopped and let time go by. He waited a little greater than a minute as a result of he thought that he wouldn’t be first. However he was mistaken together with his calculations. Ross Department (Yamaha) and Daniel Sanders (KTM) had been 13 and 53 seconds slower than him. And his major rival for the title, Toby Worth, chief of the overall, left nearly 4 minutes. And he’ll begin once more this Sunday – at this time is the remaining stage – in a magnificent place, seventh, to increase his benefit. Or so it appears.
As a result of, as Barreda demonstrated yesterday, not all plans go effectively on the Dakar. And in a race as yours-mine as we’re seeing this yr, through which strategy performs a basic function and the outcomes are like a yo-yo — someday you win, the following you don’t even enter the highest 10 — profitable levels isn’t. the whole lot.
The Spaniard is aware of it effectively, who in his ten participations has 4 retirements. He represents the essence of the Dakar like nobody else, a very robust race through which ending is a success. And struggling blows is the order of the day. Already the yr of his debut, Barreda had a fall that left him out of the competitors within the second stage; the next yr he achieved his first victory. And since then he has not stopped including. Though his 27 victories cover a thorn that he has effectively nailed: they didn’t assist him to win the Dakar. For now.
For now, 2021 smiles at him. Profitable 27 Dakar levels within the bike class is just out there to the privileged few. And he’s. With yesterday’s victory, the third in 2021, the Spaniard is among the many three drivers with probably the most stage victories within the historical past of the race. Forward he has two legendary figures: Stéphane Peterhansel and Cyril Despres, each with 33 wins, six titles for the primary, 5 for the second.
After all, Barreda likes racing nearly greater than enjoying to win the Dakar. The strategy, if any, takes a again seat. That – and a whole lot of dangerous luck – has usually left him out of the title struggle. Properly, the falls at full velocity have ended up sentencing his profession. You simply have to take a look at his report within the final three years: in 2018, for instance, he dropped out on account of knee and wrist issues when he was second general; In 2019, a fall ended him in a hole full of rocks from which it took him greater than an hour to get out: he misplaced the lead; Final yr he was hit by an accident the times earlier than, he ran with a crack in his ribs, he fell in two levels and ended up a wreck. After that he even received a stage. And completed. He reached the ultimate aim in Qiddiya. However with none choice to struggle for a Touareg that resists him like few others.