After the short opening stage of the event, the 2013 Dakar Rally began in earnest on day two when competitors faced a commanding 242km long special stage. The looped stage, which started and finished in Pisco, Peru, delivered some surprising results when riders tackled the first set of challenging sand dunes in the rally.
After opting to end stage one in a tactical 10th overall, Spaniard Barreda put his starting position to good use and claimed the day’s win. With many riders losing time in the soft sand dunes, Barreda steered clear of trouble to secure the win by over three minutes from KTM’s Joan Pedrero.
“It was a really tough stage, but I’m really pleased with the way I raced,” confirmed Barreda. “By the time we were 100 km into the race, I was in command and I set my own pace to the finish line. I wanted to get away fast and that’s what I did.”
Following some slight navigation issues early in the day, Pedrero soon found his rhythm and ended his day in a satisfying second overall. This result now lifts him to third overall in the standings. Commenting on the day’s events, Pedrero remarked…
“I started seventh this morning but at 40km I had some problems finding a waypoint and I set off with Frans Verhoeven, who I then overtook. I then caught up with Cyril Despres and we tackled the last big dunes together.”
Although only making his debut in the Dakar Rally, Barreda’s teammate, Australian Matt Fish delivered an incredible performance to place just two minutes behind Pedrero for third position.
”There was such a lot of dust and navigation but I’m happy with the result. I’m under orders from the team, and it’s important to be a help to my teammates. I’m really glad to have got my first podium place in a stage of the Dakar,” said Fish.
Finishing just over 30 seconds behind Fish in fourth place was KTM’s Rubien Faria, while Dakar Rally rookie – and fill in rider for the injured Marc Coma - Kurt Caselli (KTM) completed the top five.
Enduring a frustrating stage two, KTM’s Cyril Despres was one of the numerous riders to struggle with a towering sand dune at the 75km point in the stage. He, like others opted to take a detour around a formidable dune and now trails the overall leader by eight minutes.
Stage One winner Chaleco Lopez (KTM) of Chile was another in this group and he is now down the order at 20th overall.
Stage 2 Classification
1. Joan Barreda (Husqvarna) 02:42:31; 2. Joan Pedrero (KTM) 02:45:47; 3. Matt Fish (Husqvarna) 02:48:24; 4. Rubien Faria (KTM) 02:48:57; 5. Kurt Caselli (KTM) 02:49:41…
Overall Results (after stage 2)
1. Joan Barreda (Husqvarna) 03:24:11; 2. Rubien Faria (KTM) 03:29:47; 3. Joan Pedrero (KTM) 03:30:47; 4. David Casteu (Yamaha) 03:31:09; 5. Cyril Despres (KTM) 03:33:01…