Monster Energy Honda Team rider Kevin Benavides is a stone’s throw away from a final overall podium place when tomorrow’s last stage concludes in Cordoba, Argentina. It was a tough slog today with Argentinean rider Benavides, giving the race his all, and eventually going on to post second place.

Today’s stage featured two different special stages with a total of 424 kilometres against the clock as part of the full 907 kilometres on the day. The first special, with barely visible tracks, took the competitors through sand and vegetation as well as testing rider’s navigational skills in rivers beds. The final stretch passed through fifty kilometres of dunes. Special B was raced over ‘WRC -style’ narrower tracks filled with sharp bends.

Kevin Benavides performed well to keep his rivals in check and to cut down the difference that separates him from the leader by nine minutes. The Argentine rider finished second, two minutes behind the winner of the special and tomorrow he should be able to confirm his position on the final day of the 40th Dakar Rally.

American Ricky Brabec has unable to finish the first special today after suffering an electrical problem. Brabec was in fourth provisional position on the day and in sixth overall spot.

The young Chilean rider José Ignacio Cornejo, riding the bike of Portuguese retiree Paulo Gonçalves, today stopped to try and help out team-mate Ricky Brabec, but was not able to assist him and get the American back into the race. In spite of conceding 45 minutes, the rider still remains in the top ten in the general rankings of the race.

Tomorrow we can look forward to a white-knuckle ride as the competitors go all out to improve or defend their positions. They will have only 120 kilometres of timed special, out a total of 286 km in which to make their mark. Both start and finish of the race are in Cordoba. The first rider is due to start the special at 08:30 in the morning and should finish shortly before noon after crossing several rivers on many occasions.

Kevin Benavides

Kevin Benavides

Today I rode a good stage, which was hard but where I had a lot of fun on the sand tracks. I had a minor fall but I pushed hard and was able to take some time back the leader. Tomorrow I will go out and try to ride an intelligent race. We are going to try to take it carefully because there are several dangers and you can’t mess around.

Monster Energy Honda Team
Ricky Brabec

Ricky Brabec

It was very unfortunate on the penultimate day for me to have an electric issue and they forced me to quit, as they only gave me an hour to get moving again. We’ll just have to keep working hard towards next year. I’m sorry to all friends and fans whom I haven’t been able to keep up to date recently. Thank you all very much for the support.

Monster Energy Honda Team
Raul Castells

Raul Castells

Monster Energy Honda Team Manager

This is the penultimate day of the 2018 Dakar and for now we are very happy with the results that Kevin has been achieving. We hope it continues like this and let’s see how it ends tomorrow. I hope he finishes second, which would be a very good position for the Dakar that he has been riding over the last two weeks of racing. I also want to highlight the work of José Ignacio Cornejo, who until today had been having a great Dakar. Too bad that Ricky Brabec had an electrical problem and was unable to finish today. We are in Córdoba and just one day to go before the close the Dakar. Hopefully everything goes well on the final day.

Monster Energy Honda Team
Dakar Rally

Dakar, Dakar (multiple countries)

Rally 2018

Saturday 20 Jan 2018, 01:00 UTC
# Rider Num Nationality Nat. Points Pts. Team Constructor Constr. Time/Gap
1 Toby Price AUT 25 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM 4:48'33
2 Kevin Benavides ARG 20 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +2'03
3 Antoine Meo 19 FRA 16 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +2'44
4 Matthias Walkner AUT 13 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +11'32
5 Joan Pedrero 17 SPA 11 Sherco TVS Rally Factory Sherco +15'12
6 Johnny Aubert FRA 10 Gas Gas Racing Gas Gas +16'10
7 Armand Monleon SPA 9 Daming Racing Team KTM +21'31
8 Oriol Mena SPA 8 Hero Motorsports Team Rally Hero +21'54
9 Jonathan Barragán SPA 7 Gas Gas Racing Gas Gas +22'11
10 Gerard Farres 23 SPA 6 Himoinsa Team KTM +23'34
11 Daniel Oliveras SPA 5 Himoinsa Team KTM +24'52
12 Pablo Quintanilla CHI 4 Husqvarna Factory Rally Team Husqvarna +25'02
13 Laia Sanz SPA 3 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Racing Team KTM +27'39
14 Diego Martin ARG 2 XRaids KTM +28'00
15 Mark Samuels USA 1 OX Motorsports Honda +31'07
23 José Ignacio Cornejo CHI 0 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +45'52
Wednesday 17 Jan 2018, 23:45 UTC
# Rider Num Nationality Nat. Points Pts. Team Constructor Constr. Time/Gap
1 Toby Price AUT 25 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM 4:01'33
2 Kevin Benavides ARG 20 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +1'38
3 Antoine Meo 19 FRA 16 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +6'31
4 Ricky Brabec USA 13 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +7'34
5 Matthias Walkner AUT 11 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +11'01
6 Gerard Farres 23 SPA 10 Himoinsa Team KTM +12'32
7 Johnny Aubert FRA 9 Gas Gas Racing Gas Gas +19'38
8 Joan Pedrero 17 SPA 8 Sherco TVS Rally Factory Sherco +22'46
9 Oriol Mena SPA 7 Hero Motorsports Team Rally Hero +27'00
10 José Ignacio Cornejo CHI 6 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +27'08
11 Armand Monleon SPA 5 Daming Racing Team KTM +33'38
12 Pablo Quintanilla CHI 4 Husqvarna Factory Rally Team Husqvarna +33'56
13 Andrew Short USA 3 Husqvarna Factory Rally Team Husqvarna +36'22
14 Mark Samuels USA 2 OX Motorsports Honda +36'27
15 Daniel Oliveras SPA 1 Himoinsa Team KTM +40'44
Wednesday 17 Jan 2018, 03:30 UTC
# Rider Num Nationality Nat. Points Pts. Team Constructor Constr. Time/Gap
1 Matthias Walkner AUT 25 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM 4:52'26
2 Pablo Quintanilla CHI 20 Husqvarna Factory Rally Team Husqvarna +11'35
3 Gerard Farres 23 SPA 16 Himoinsa Team KTM +16'21
4 Oriol Mena SPA 13 Hero Motorsports Team Rally Hero +20'45
5 José Ignacio Cornejo CHI 11 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +23'14
6 Andrew Short USA 10 Husqvarna Factory Rally Team Husqvarna +24'13
7 Mark Samuels USA 9 OX Motorsports Honda +24'50
8 Daniel Oliveras SPA 8 Himoinsa Team KTM +25'25
9 Armand Monleon SPA 7 Daming Racing Team KTM +34'18
10 Joan Pedrero 17 SPA 6 Sherco TVS Rally Factory Sherco +36'24
11 Laia Sanz SPA 5 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Racing Team KTM +36'35
12 Johnny Aubert FRA 4 Gas Gas Racing Gas Gas +37'29
13 Rodney Faggotter AUS 3 Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha +38'07
14 Joan Barreda SPA 2 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +38'15
15 Daniel Nosiglia 33 BOL 1 HT Husqvarna Rally Team Husqvarna +40'22
17 Kevin Benavides ARG 0 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +47'35
24 Ricky Brabec USA 0 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +56'13
Monday 15 Jan 2018, 01:00 UTC
# Rider Num Nationality Nat. Points Pts. Team Constructor Constr. Time/Gap
1 Antoine Meo 19 FRA 25 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM 5:24'01
2 Ricky Brabec USA 20 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +1'08
3 Toby Price AUT 16 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +2'45
4 Kevin Benavides ARG 13 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +5'52
5 Stefan Svitko SLK 11 Slovnaft Team KTM +6'46
6 Matthias Walkner AUT 10 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +7'00
7 Adrien van Beveren FRA 9 Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha +8'44
8 Joan Barreda SPA 8 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +12'00
9 Laia Sanz SPA 7 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Racing Team KTM +14'15
10 Armand Monleon SPA 6 Daming Racing Team KTM +15'15
11 Johnny Aubert FRA 5 Gas Gas Racing Gas Gas +16'15
12 Oriol Mena SPA 4 Hero Motorsports Team Rally Hero +16'57
13 Luciano Benavides ARG 3 KTM Rally Team KTM +18'44
14 Martín Duplessis ARG 2 Honda Argentina – MEC Team Honda +19'11
15 Shane Esposito USA 1 KTM Rally Team KTM +20'21
22 José Ignacio Cornejo CHI 0 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +25'46
Sunday 14 Jan 2018, 01:00 UTC
# Rider Num Nationality Nat. Points Pts. Team Constructor Constr. Time/Gap
1 Joan Barreda SPA 25 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda 05:11'10
2 Adrien van Beveren FRA 20 Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha +02'51
3 Kevin Benavides ARG 16 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +08'02
4 Toby Price AUT 13 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +08'43
5 Pablo Quintanilla CHI 11 Husqvarna Factory Rally Team Husqvarna +08'53
6 Matthias Walkner AUT 10 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +09'16
7 Stefan Svitko SLK 9 Slovnaft Team KTM +09'30
8 Xavier de Soultrait FRA 8 Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha +10'03
9 Antoine Meo 19 FRA 7 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +12'46
10 Ricky Brabec USA 6 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +13'48
11 Jonathan Barragán SPA 5 Gas Gas Racing Gas Gas +14'15
12 Gerard Farres 23 SPA 4 Himoinsa Team KTM +20'07
13 Daniel Nosiglia 33 BOL 3 HT Husqvarna Rally Team Husqvarna +20'39
14 Daniel Oliveras SPA 2 Himoinsa Team KTM +22'04
15 Johnny Aubert FRA 1 Gas Gas Racing Gas Gas +22'40
24 José Ignacio Cornejo CHI 0 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +46'51
Thursday 11 Jan 2018, 23:55 UTC
# Rider Num Nationality Nat. Points Pts. Team Constructor Constr. Time/Gap
1 Antoine Meo 19 FRA 25 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM 1:54'10
2 Kevin Benavides ARG 20 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +0'30
3 Toby Price AUT 16 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +0'30
4 Martín Duplessis ARG 13 Honda Argentina – MEC Team Honda +1'13
5 Daniel Oliveras SPA 11 Himoinsa Team KTM +1'55
6 Pablo Quintanilla CHI 10 Husqvarna Factory Rally Team Husqvarna +2'00
7 Daniel Nosiglia 33 BOL 9 HT Husqvarna Rally Team Husqvarna +2'13
8 Adrien van Beveren FRA 8 Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha +3'27
9 Joan Barreda SPA 7 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +3'30
10 Michael Metge FRA 6 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +3'37
11 Matthias Walkner AUT 5 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +4'06
12 Gerard Farres 23 SPA 4 Himoinsa Team KTM +4'14
13 Stefan Svitko SLK 3 Slovnaft Team KTM +4'19
14 Armand Monleon SPA 2 Daming Racing Team KTM +4'34
15 Jonathan Barragán SPA 1 Gas Gas Racing Gas Gas +4'48
19 Ricky Brabec USA 0 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +6'16
24 José Ignacio Cornejo CHI 0 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +8'12
Thursday 11 Jan 2018, 01:00 UTC
# Rider Num Nationality Nat. Points Pts. Team Constructor Constr. Time/Gap
1 Joan Barreda SPA 25 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda 3:19'42
2 Matthias Walkner AUT 20 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +10'26
3 Kevin Benavides ARG 16 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +12'20
4 Antoine Meo 19 FRA 13 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +13'00
5 Adrien van Beveren FRA 11 Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha +14'35
6 Xavier de Soultrait FRA 10 Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha +14'43
7 Toby Price AUT 9 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +15'00
8 Gerard Farres 23 SPA 8 Himoinsa Team KTM +16'54
9 Ricky Brabec USA 7 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +19'16
10 Johnny Aubert FRA 6 Gas Gas Racing Gas Gas +21'17
11 Oriol Mena SPA 5 Hero Motorsports Team Rally Hero +22'35
12 Michael Metge FRA 4 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +22'38
13 Stefan Svitko SLK 3 Slovnaft Team KTM +25'07
14 Laia Sanz SPA 2 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Racing Team KTM +27'29
15 Jonathan Barragán SPA 1 Gas Gas Racing Gas Gas +27'44
19 José Ignacio Cornejo CHI 0 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +29'52
Tuesday 9 Jan 2018, 23:00 UTC
# Rider Num Nationality Nat. Points Pts. Team Constructor Constr. Time/Gap
1 Adrien van Beveren FRA 25 Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha 4:08'23
2 Xavier de Soultrait FRA 20 Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha +5'01
3 Matthias Walkner AUT 16 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +7'10
4 Pablo Quintanilla CHI 13 Husqvarna Factory Rally Team Husqvarna +7'32
5 Stefan Svitko SLK 11 Slovnaft Team KTM +7'45
6 Daniel Nosiglia 33 BOL 10 HT Husqvarna Rally Team Husqvarna +8'39
7 José Ignacio Cornejo CHI 9 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +8'45
8 Kevin Benavides ARG 8 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +9'14
9 Joan Barreda SPA 7 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +10'00
10 Gerard Farres 23 SPA 6 Himoinsa Team KTM +10'11
11 Franco Caimi 7 ARG 5 Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha +10'23
12 Johnny Aubert FRA 4 Gas Gas Racing Gas Gas +10'24
13 Michael Metge FRA 3 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +11'17
14 Jonathan Barragán SPA 2 Gas Gas Racing Gas Gas +11'23
15 Toby Price AUT 1 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +13'23
24 Ricky Brabec USA 0 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +23'44
Monday 8 Jan 2018, 23:00 UTC
# Rider Num Nationality Nat. Points Pts. Team Constructor Constr. Time/Gap
1 Sam Sunderland GBR 25 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM 3:20'43
2 Kevin Benavides ARG 20 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +3'03
3 Toby Price AUT 16 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +3'28
4 Ricky Brabec USA 13 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +3'55
5 Pablo Quintanilla CHI 11 Husqvarna Factory Rally Team Husqvarna +4'20
6 Gerard Farres 23 SPA 10 Himoinsa Team KTM +5'08
7 Stefan Svitko SLK 9 Slovnaft Team KTM +6'03
8 Antoine Meo 19 FRA 8 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +6'23
9 José Ignacio Cornejo CHI 7 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +7'06
10 Walter Nosiglia BOL 6 HT Husqvarna Rally Team Husqvarna +8'27
11 Michael Metge FRA 5 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +9'03
12 Matthias Walkner AUT 4 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +9'04
13 Oriol Mena SPA 3 Hero Motorsports Team Rally Hero +9'25
14 Franco Caimi 7 ARG 2 Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha +10'56
15 Xavier de Soultrait FRA 1 Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha +11'52
30 Joan Barreda SPA 0 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +27'49
Sunday 7 Jan 2018, 22:30 UTC
# Rider Num Nationality Nat. Points Pts. Team Constructor Constr. Time/Gap
1 Joan Barreda SPA 25 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda 2:56'44
2 Adrien van Beveren FRA 20 Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha +2'54
3 Matthias Walkner AUT 16 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +4'24
4 Michael Metge FRA 13 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +4'39
5 Kevin Benavides ARG 11 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +5'43
6 Pablo Quintanilla CHI 10 Husqvarna Factory Rally Team Husqvarna +5'45
7 Sam Sunderland GBR 9 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +6'01
8 Xavier de Soultrait FRA 8 Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha +6'12
9 Franco Caimi 7 ARG 7 Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha +6'36
10 Toby Price AUT 6 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +6'40
11 Jonathan Barragán SPA 5 Gas Gas Racing Gas Gas +6'43
12 Ricky Brabec USA 4 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +7'19
13 José Ignacio Cornejo CHI 3 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +9'32
14 Antoine Meo 19 FRA 2 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +9'43
15 Gerard Farres 23 SPA 1 Himoinsa Team KTM +10'53
Sunday 7 Jan 2018, 14:34 UTC
# Rider Num Nationality Nat. Points Pts. Team Constructor Constr. Time/Gap
1 Sam Sunderland GBR 25 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM 20'56
2 Adrien van Beveren FRA 20 Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha ++0'33
3 Pablo Quintanilla CHI 16 Husqvarna Factory Rally Team Husqvarna ++0'56
4 Joan Barreda SPA 13 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda ++0'57
5 Xavier de Soultrait FRA 11 Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha ++01'07
6 Matthias Walkner AUT 10 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM ++01'23
7 Franco Caimi 7 ARG 9 Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha ++01'31
8 Daniel Nosiglia 33 BOL 8 HT Husqvarna Rally Team Husqvarna ++01'33
9 Antoine Meo 19 FRA 7 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM ++01'49
10 Kevin Benavides ARG 6 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda ++01'53
11 Ricky Brabec USA 5 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda ++02'47
12 Laia Sanz SPA 4 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Racing Team KTM ++03'16
13 Santosh Chunchungguppe 49 IND 3 Hero Motorsports Team Rally Hero ++03'16
14 Toby Price AUT 2 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM ++03'21
15 José Ignacio Cornejo CHI 1 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda ++03'21
19 Michael Metge FRA 0 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda ++03'51
Provisional Standings
Saturday, 20 Jan 2018
# Rider Num Nationality Nat. Team Constructor Constr.
1 Matthias WALKNER AUT Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM
2 Kevin BENAVIDES ARG Monster Energy Honda Team Honda
3 Toby PRICE AUT Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM
4 Antoine MEO 19 FRA Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM
5 Gerard FARRES 23 SPA Himoinsa Team KTM
6 Johnny AUBERT FRA Gas Gas Racing Gas Gas
7 Pablo QUINTANILLA CHI Husqvarna Factory Rally Team Husqvarna
8 Oriol MENA SPA Hero Motorsports Team Rally Hero
9 Daniel OLIVERAS SPA Himoinsa Team KTM
10 José Ignacio CORNEJO CHI Monster Energy Honda Team Honda