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Dakar 2007: KTM Press Release 07Jan

  Posted at 08:59:19 PM
  File under  Dakar Race KTM
  Author: KTM Press Release
  Location: Normandy, France

Slippery when wet
Danger! The riders had to pay attention today. The second stage of the 29th Dakar Rally was a tricky one. The loop near Portimao was not very long, but the fog and the clay made it a very dangerous special.

Dakar KTM Mechanics
Mechanics working on Despres his bike
Many of the lesser skilled riders fell, those with trial experience had some advantage in the Portuguese hills. Cyril Despres (KTM Gauloises) found out the hard way what the track was like. Halfway in the stage, near kilometer 30, Despres missed a corner and fell in a gorge. The winner of the 2005 Dakar didn’t sustain any injuries, but his bike was badly damaged.

The fueltank was cracked, some of the levers were broken.

David Casteu
David Casteu satisfied with today's result
Despres managed to get out of the ravine himself, but needed the mechanical help of his teammate Frans Verhoeven to continue. Luckily the Dutchman was very close behind and was able to repare the bike as good as it gets. Despres lost 5.45 minutes to Portuguese winner Helder Rodrigues and finished 26th. Verhoeven lost 6.25 and finished in 36th position. David Casteu (4th, just behind Isidre Esteve Pujol) really enjoyed the ride. ‘It was like home, with the smell of the mimosa. I was happy enough to stay on the bike. The leg injury I sustained in the first special didn’t bother me anymore. I had a good massage and I am build like a horse.’

Marc Coma (KTM Repsol) again didn’t take any risks and finished with a fifth time. ‘It was very slippery, like riding on ice. I can imagine the power was a disadvantage today, but after a few kilometers I was understood how to use the power of the bike in a way that was helpful.’
As the rest of the KTM factoryriders Coma is looking forward to Africa. ‘The first stage in Morocco will be one for the best navigators. I trust in my own skills. It will be a combination of navigation, paying attention and try to keep the pace as high as possible.’

Results of today's special stage:

Rank Rider Nation Bike Time
3 Esteve Pujol SPA KTM 1.04.29
4 David Casteu FRA KTM 1.04.54
5 Marc Coma SPA KTM 1.05.10
9 Giovanni Sala ITA KTM 1.06.49
11 Jordi Viladoms SPA KTM 1.07.11
26 Cyril Despres FRA KTM 1.08.29
36 Frans Verhoeven NED KTM 1.09.09
81 Chris Blais USA KTM 1.14.34

Overall Standings:

Rank Rider Nation Bike Time
3 Esteve Pujol SPA KTM 2.31.36
4 David Casteu FRA KTM 2.32.08
8 Marc Coma SPA KTM 2.34.59
11 Cyril Despres FRA KTM 2.38.02
12 Frans Verhoeven NED KTM 2.38.44
14 Giovanni Sala ITA KTM 2.40.38
15 Jordi Viladoms SPA KTM   2.41.13
18 Chris Blais USA KTM 2.42.14

Via: KTM

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