On a day that was hampered by bad weather, rally rookie Caselli showed that he’s quickly coming to grips with navigation by steering his way to an impressive win.
Having started fifth, the US rider took advantage of the sand made more stable by the last few days’ rainfall, to show his power and skill on Baja types of terrains.
Husqvarna’s Paulo Goncalves took second place in the much-feared La Rioja to Fiambalà stage of the Dakar 2013. Despite a small navigational error at the start of the stage, Cyril Despres nevertheless made up for it at the end and strengthened his leading position in the general standings.
He now leads team-mate Ruben Faria over 13 minutes and Chaleco Lopez (KTM), who finished the stage in fifth place after losing his bearings somewhat toward the end of the stage, by 18 minutes.
After looking incredibly fast in the early stages of the day, HRC’s Helder Rodrigues ran into trouble.
Leading at CP1, then a close second at CP2, the Portuguese rider was left stranded at CP3 for 48 minutes when a stray branch broke a wire and stopped him in his tracks.
He survived to end the day 28th overall but drops to ninth in the overall classification.
Results – Stage 11
1. Kurt Caselli (KTM) 02:55:01; 2. Paulo Goncalves (Husqvarna) 02:59:46; 3. Cyril Despres (KTM) 03:01:25; 4. Juan Pedrero (KTM) 03:05:19; 5. Chaleco Lopez (KTM) 03:05:52… 36. Stan Watt (KTM) 03:48:33… 45. Tim Forman 03:58:44… 66. Si Pavey (Husqvarna) 04:18:05… 69. Lyndon Poskitt (KTM) 04:19:46… 100. Craig Bounds (KTM) 04:51:04…
Overall Classification (After stage 11)
1. Cyril Despres (KTM) 33:48; 2. Rubien Faria (KTM) 34:01:45; 3. Chaleco Lopez (KTM) 34:06:37; 4. Ivan Jakes (KTM) 34:12:02; 5. Alessandro Botturi (Husqvarna) 34:18:01…