The Dakar Rally today reached the halfway point with the dispute of the fifth stage. The second part of the marathon stage proved to be a particularly tactical affair with riders seeking to secure favourable attacking positions for the coming days. Ricky Brabec still holds the top spot in the general standings and Benavides is well-positioned to tackle the second part of the rally.

American Ricky Brabec arrives at the rest day of the Dakar in Arequipa, as race leader. Today the Monster Energy Honda Team rider handled the stage with intelligence after having taken command at the top of the general rankings yesterday.

The start of this fifth stage commenced after a 161-kilometre link section from the Moquegua camp and featured a mass line start with waves of ten riders starting together. The latter part of the special saw competitors face the dunes of Illo with 65% off-piste before a further 345 kilometres of timed special.

Monster Energy Honda Team riders performed well on a stage whose objective was to secure optimal start positions for the following stage rather than an outright stage win. The rest day arrives tomorrow in Arequipa with Ricky Brabec and Kevin Benavides lying in tenth and eleventh places respectively. Both riders finished just 6’46” seconds behind the winner of the special.

Ricky Brabec holds the first position of the rally, with 16:51’34 and Kevin Benavides is nine minutes behind in the sixth place.

Nacho Cornejo finished in seventeenth place, 13’10 seconds adrift of the leader. The Chilean rider stopped to attend Paulo Gonçalves, who had fallen at the kilometre 155 of the special sustaining a damaged right wrist. Gonçalves, with twelve Dakar participations under his belt, was forced to retire from the race.

Tomorrow in Arequipa, the riders can savour a well-earned day of rest. The action restarts on Sunday with a stage that takes the entourage back to San Juan de Marcona.

José Ignacio Cornejo

José Ignacio Cornejo

Today we had the stage with the mass start. I think it was not the right day to do it as there was a lot of dust, a lot of stones which made it very dangerous. At first we were all quite calm, keeping the distance by the dust until the kilometre 155 where Paulo fell. I stopped and stayed until the helicopter arrived. Then I continued calmly because there was not much dust as many of the riders had passed me. By the time we got to the area of sand and dunes I was able to push a bit harder but I didn’t know who had made up time on me. Now we are waiting to get the time back but I am happy with my pace. I wish a quick recovery to Paulo and now it's time to recharge our batteries for the five tough stages that we have left.

Monster Energy Honda Team
Ricky Brabec

Ricky Brabec

Today was the second stage of the marathon. Yesterday went really well. I was really mad. I had to push really hard to make up for lost time so I had to really go for it. Today was more complicated because with a mass line start you can’t really make up time – you can lose it but you can’t make it back. Now we have a rest day so we relax a bit and prepare for the final stages.

Monster Energy Honda Team
Kevin Benavides

Kevin Benavides

It's been a good first week for me. I think I’ve done pretty well. The first days I took more calmly but now I have started pushing more. Today I started out on the beach in the first group and until the kilometre 200 I was opening the way so I did not have to eat much dust. Then I sat back to get an advantageous start of the Sunday stage. Now it's time to think about the strategy for what remains of the Dakar and rest and recharge the batteries.

Monster Energy Honda Team
Raul Castells

Raul Castells

Monster Energy Honda Team Manager

Complicated stage today with a line start on the second leg of the marathon, where unfortunately Paulo suffered an accident and hurt his hand. I want to personally thank the sporting gesture of Sam Sunderland who stopped to assist our rider. Fortunately, Paulo is out of danger. It has been a very good stage of Ricky, Kevin and Nacho, who controlled very well and are in good positions. From here, tomorrow we get to enjoy a rest period that will be good for us to prepare and be able to face the second part of this Dakar with a high level of motivation.

Monster Energy Honda Team
Dakar Rally

Dakar, Dakar (multiple countries)

Rally 2019

Saturday 12 Jan 2019, 01:00 UTC
# Rider Num Nationality Nat. Points Pts. Team Constructor Constr. Time/Gap
1 Sam Sunderland GBR 25 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM 04:11'48
2 Xavier de Soultrait FRA 20 Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha +03'23
3 Matthias Walkner AUT 16 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +03'32
4 Lorenzo Santolino SPA 13 Sherco TVS Rally Factory Sherco +04'00
5 Adrien van Beveren FRA 11 Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha +04'26
6 Andrew Short USA 10 Husqvarna Factory Rally Team Husqvarna +04'36
7 Luciano Benavides ARG 9 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +04'36
8 Stefan Svitko SLK 8 Slovnaft Team KTM +05'05
9 Toby Price AUT 7 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +05'45
10 Skyler Howes USA 6 Klymclw Racing Husqvarna +06'00
11 Kevin Benavides ARG 5 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +06'46
12 Ricky Brabec USA 4 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +06'46
13 José Ignacio Cornejo CHI 3 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +13'10
Thursday 10 Jan 2019, 22:00 UTC
# Rider Num Nationality Nat. Points Pts. Team Constructor Constr. Time/Gap
1 Ricky Brabec USA 25 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda 03:40'30
2 Matthias Walkner AUT 20 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +06'19
3 Toby Price AUT 16 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +07'07
4 Sam Sunderland GBR 13 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +11'35
5 Adrien van Beveren FRA 11 Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha +13'29
6 Paulo Goncalves POR 10 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +13'36
7 Stefan Svitko SLK 9 Slovnaft Team KTM +14'10
8 José Ignacio Cornejo CHI 8 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +14'33
9 Kevin Benavides ARG 7 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +15'20
10 Lorenzo Santolino SPA 6 Sherco TVS Rally Factory Sherco +17'02
Thursday 10 Jan 2019, 01:00 UTC
# Rider Num Nationality Nat. Points Pts. Team Constructor Constr. Time/Gap
1 Xavier de Soultrait FRA 25 Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha 04:07'42
2 Pablo Quintanilla CHI 20 Husqvarna Factory Rally Team Husqvarna +00'15
3 Kevin Benavides ARG 16 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +02'37
4 Adrien van Beveren FRA 13 Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha +06'42
5 Sam Sunderland GBR 11 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +08'26
6 Paulo Goncalves POR 10 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +09'31
7 Stefan Svitko SLK 9 Slovnaft Team KTM +10'50
8 Oriol Mena SPA 8 Hero Motorsports Team Rally Hero +11'15
9 Toby Price AUT 7 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +14'16
10 Michael Metge FRA 6 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +14'45
11 Lorenzo Santolino SPA 5 Sherco TVS Rally Factory Sherco +14'59
12 Andrew Short USA 4 Husqvarna Factory Rally Team Husqvarna +15'10
13 Ricky Brabec USA 3 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +20'01
14 José Ignacio Cornejo CHI 2 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +30'57
Wednesday 9 Jan 2019, 01:00 UTC
# Rider Num Nationality Nat. Points Pts. Team Constructor Constr. Time/Gap
1 Matthias Walkner AUT 25 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM 03:21'57
2 Ricky Brabec USA 20 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +00'22
3 Joan Barreda SPA 16 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +01'41
4 Toby Price AUT 13 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +03'06
5 Pablo Quintanilla CHI 11 Husqvarna Factory Rally Team Husqvarna +03'24
6 Sam Sunderland GBR 10 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +06'03
7 Adrien van Beveren FRA 9 Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha +09'03
8 Kevin Benavides ARG 8 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +09'59
9 Andrew Short USA 7 Husqvarna Factory Rally Team Husqvarna +12'25
10 José Ignacio Cornejo CHI 6 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +13'43
11 Paulo Goncalves POR 5 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +14'12
Monday 7 Jan 2019, 23:30 UTC
# Rider Num Nationality Nat. Points Pts. Team Constructor Constr. Time/Gap
1 Joan Barreda SPA 25 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda 57'36
2 Pablo Quintanilla CHI 20 Husqvarna Factory Rally Team Husqvarna +01'34
3 Ricky Brabec USA 16 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +02'52
4 Adrien van Beveren FRA 13 Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha +02'55
5 Sam Sunderland GBR 11 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +02'56
6 Toby Price AUT 10 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +03'08
7 Matthias Walkner AUT 9 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +03'12
8 Kevin Benavides ARG 8 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +04'00
9 José Ignacio Cornejo CHI 7 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +05'22
10 Xavier de Soultrait FRA 6 Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha +05'54
11 Paulo Goncalves POR 5 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +06'41
Provisional Dakar Standings
Saturday, 12 Jan 2019
# Rider Nationality Nat. Team Constructor Constr.
1 Ricky BRABEC USA Monster Energy Honda Team Honda
2 Sam SUNDERLAND GBR Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM
3 Pablo QUINTANILLA CHI Husqvarna Factory Rally Team Husqvarna
4 Toby PRICE AUT Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM
5 Matthias WALKNER AUT Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM
6 Adrien VAN BEVEREN FRA Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha
7 Kevin BENAVIDES ARG Monster Energy Honda Team Honda
8 Xavier DE SOULTRAIT FRA Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha
9 Stefan SVITKO SLK Slovnaft Team KTM
10 Andrew SHORT USA Husqvarna Factory Rally Team Husqvarna
14 José Ignacio CORNEJO CHI Monster Energy Honda Team Honda