The brutality of the Dakar Rally today showed its most bitter face to Monster Energy Honda Team as Ricky Brabec was forced out on stage eight. Nacho Cornejo opened the track throughout almost the entire special and Benavides got delayed with navigational instrument issues.

It was an endless, troublesome day for the Monster Energy Honda Team riders who suffered the harshness of the Dakar Rally, particularly for Ricky Brabec, who was forced to abandon the race while still holding top spot in the general standings. “It was a shame, but I will go away happy with the good pace that I have set in this Dakar. I will return with even more motivation next year,” stated the American as he arrived back at the Pisco bivouac.

The eighth stage, the ‘Super-Ica’, got underway this morning with a mixed car and bike start which saw Nacho Cornejo and Ricky Brabec head out onto an open track with the pair both intent on obtaining crucial results in the special. Nacho was forced to open the way given that Sunderland claimed to have a bike issue and consequently started later. The Chilean was thus lumbered with the weight of opening throughout almost the whole day. Only towards the end was he briefly passed over a couple of kilometres by the car of Peterhansel who eventually got stuck in the dunes. Despite the handicap Cornejo performed valiantly on a high-speed, error-free ride to wrap up the day with the eighth fastest time.

Meanwhile Kevin Benavides had to endure a problem with the navigation equipment during the 361-kilometre special, which delayed the rider considerably. The Argentine Monster Energy Honda Team is sixth in the race overall.

Tomorrow Wednesday sees the penultimate stage of this 2019 Dakar Rally which will once again be held on a looping circuit, this time from Pisco. There race will include 313 kilometres of timed special stage out of a total of 410 kilometres on the day.

José Ignacio Cornejo

José Ignacio Cornejo

Today was a long day. I’m happy because I opened almost the whole special, except for a few kilometres when a car overtook me. It was very difficult to open the track all day in a very sandy stage, off-piste and in open desert, so I’m very happy with today's stage. I think it will help me in the future, you learn a lot by opening the track. It's a pity that Ricky had to retire, he was having a great race. Everyone was impressed because he was very solid. It encouraged him but also the whole team. Now we have to keep pushing forward, there are still two days left and everything can happen.

Monster Energy Honda Team
Ricky Brabec

Ricky Brabec

It was a really hard day. There was nothing really positive about my day, especially for the race. The coolest part was getting a helicopter ride along the beach and back. It’s heart-wrenching. Not easy. We have to go home, take a break and come back. I’m at a loss for words. It was amazing to be on the top for the previous days. It’s really nice to have the team support me and the whole team. It felt like the vibes and the confidence in me were good. That helped me to achieve so many great days.

Monster Energy Honda Team
Kevin Benavides

Kevin Benavides

Today the stage was complicated because I wasn’t able to validate a waypoint. It was a point which wasn’t visible but should have been very easy to find as it was just down a mountain as you entered the beach. I was at the right point and but the waypoint wouldn’t open. I went through there a thousand times and nothing showed up. I stopped Joaquim Rodrigues, he had it validated and I was at the same point and it wouldn’t go on to the next waypoint. Several other riders passed and after I stopped Michael Metge before the point and told him if I could follow him to see if it registered. Finally it did but I had already passed through many times. The organisation has seen that I went through there many times. Now we have to wait and see what they will tell us about it. It’s a pity about Ricky, he was having a great race and we could have both battled until the end. I send him all my best.

Monster Energy Honda Team
Raul Castells

Raul Castells

Monster Energy Honda Team Manager

Unfortunately, days like today, we have experienced before. These are things that can happen in motor sports and that, far from bringing us down will serve to strengthen us as a team because we will continue to fight for our goals, even if they are distant. Ricky was having an incredible race and I'm sure he will come back, even stronger if it is possible, to continue fighting for the number one spot. Likewise, I’d like to point out the great stage that Nacho Cornejo rode today having opened the track all day, but also that of Kevin, who had some problems with the navigation tools that we hope can be solved. We will keep fighting until the end.

Monster Energy Honda Team
Dakar Rally

Dakar, Dakar (multiple countries)

Rally 2019

Tuesday 15 Jan 2019, 23:30 UTC
# Rider Num Nationality Nat. Points Pts. Team Constructor Constr. Time/Gap
1 Matthias Walkner AUT 25 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM 03:55'25
2 Pablo Quintanilla CHI 20 Husqvarna Factory Rally Team Husqvarna +00'45
3 Toby Price AUT 16 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +01'13
4 Sam Sunderland GBR 13 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +06'21
5 Andrew Short USA 11 Husqvarna Factory Rally Team Husqvarna +09'51
6 Adrien van Beveren FRA 10 Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha +11'48
7 Luciano Benavides ARG 9 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +12'51
8 José Ignacio Cornejo CHI 8 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +13'48
9 Kevin Benavides ARG 7 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +15'07
10 Xavier de Soultrait FRA 6 Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha +15'50
Monday 14 Jan 2019, 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 03:51'41
2 José Ignacio Cornejo CHI 20 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +01'51
3 Ricky Brabec USA 16 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +06'30
4 Adrien van Beveren FRA 13 Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha +09'40
5 Luciano Benavides ARG 11 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +11'19
6 Andrew Short USA 10 Husqvarna Factory Rally Team Husqvarna +11'29
7 Xavier de Soultrait FRA 9 Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha +13'12
8 Toby Price AUT 8 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +14'19
9 Stefan Svitko SLK 7 Slovnaft Team KTM +16'21
10 Matthias Walkner AUT 6 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +16'38
12 Kevin Benavides ARG 4 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +19'22
Sunday 13 Jan 2019, 23:50 UTC
# Rider Num Nationality Nat. Points Pts. Team Constructor Constr. Time/Gap
1 Pablo Quintanilla CHI 25 Husqvarna Factory Rally Team Husqvarna 03:50'47
2 Kevin Benavides ARG 20 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +01'52
3 Matthias Walkner AUT 16 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +04'21
4 Toby Price AUT 13 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +04'48
5 Adrien van Beveren FRA 11 Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha +05'48
6 Ricky Brabec USA 10 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +07'30
7 Stefan Svitko SLK 9 Slovnaft Team KTM +08'20
8 Andrew Short USA 8 Husqvarna Factory Rally Team Husqvarna +13'54
9 Luciano Benavides ARG 7 Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM +15'13
10 José Ignacio Cornejo CHI 6 Monster Energy Honda Team Honda +21'47
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
Tuesday, 15 Jan 2019
# Rider Nationality Nat. Team Constructor Constr.
1 Toby PRICE AUT Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM
2 Pablo QUINTANILLA CHI Husqvarna Factory Rally Team Husqvarna
3 Matthias WALKNER AUT Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM
4 Sam SUNDERLAND GBR Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM
5 Adrien VAN BEVEREN FRA Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha
6 Kevin BENAVIDES ARG Monster Energy Honda Team Honda
7 Andrew SHORT USA Husqvarna Factory Rally Team Husqvarna
8 Xavier DE SOULTRAIT FRA Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Yamaha
9 Luciano BENAVIDES ARG Red Bull KTM Rally Factory Team KTM
10 José Ignacio CORNEJO CHI Monster Energy Honda Team Honda