Words: Team HRC
Paulo Goncalves takes the victory and the overall lead after the second stage of the Sardinia Rally. Joan Barreda in third place
Current World Champion Paulo Goncalves achieves a great result during the second stage of the Sardinia Rally Race, winning the race and making him leader of the race. Podium finish for teammate Joan Barreda and Top10 finish for Helder Rodrigues.
Important victory for Paulo Goncalves on this second stage of the rally. A result achieved due to the consistency and hard work, from both the riding and the correct interpretation of the roadbook. Paulo has done an outstanding performance, beginning the stage on third place - due to the time he lost yesterday having to stop and open a gate in order to be able to follow the set route, being reclassified to third place at the end of the first stage – with a good pace on his Honda CRF450R. Setting the best time of the day, with one minute and twenty seven seconds lead from the runner-up. Today’s result makes Paulo take the lead on the overall standing.
Joan Barreda finished on third place. The rider from Castellon had previously set the best time up until the refueling point, but immediately after made a navigation mistake by taking the wrong route. While riding on it he found himself on a collision course with another rider, luckily avoiding him. Barreda was able to recover from the incident and regain the pace he had before this moment.
Teammate Hélder Rodrigues also made a mistake while reading the roadbook today, causing him to lose several minutes while regaining the correct way. The Portuguese rider finished in ninth place at the end of the stage and is currently eighth on the overall standing.
Tomorrow will take place the first part of the marathon of the Sardinia Rally Race between Arbatax and San Leonardo. Which means that the rider have no technical assistance and the bikes will be taken to a parc ferme upon their arrival to the surroundings of the medieval church of San Leonardo.
Paulo Goncalves | 1st | 3:22'28 | Team HRC
Today I did a really good stage, I started from third place and I have won. I am very happy bout the result both for the HRC Team and me. The bike worked perfectly. We have three more days of racing ahead of us and I am leading the overall standing. We have to focus on the main goal because it’s easy to make mistakes, we have to keep our concentration in order to achieve a good result at the end of the rally.
Joan Barreda | 3rd | +2'15 | Team HRC
Today was a good day, specially on the first part we had a good focus on the navigation and allowed me to push on the first kilometers, catching up on seconds from the front riders...After refueling I cached Farrés, who was the rider in front of me, we both made a mistake and we had a difficult situation, a bit dangerous in the close forest, but after that I take again the good navigation and focused until the finish with a good speed. It was a good stage.
Helder Rodrigues | 9th | +8'02 | Team HRC
Third day today of the Sardinia Rally with a long stage of 170 kilometers with a nice, fast and technical Special with a lot of navigation. I made a mistake on one note in navigation and lost a lot of time, I tried the road again but lost a little bit of time. It wasn’t great but not as so bad either because I didn’t crash. I tried to go fast but on the second part, because of this mistake I lost a lot of time from the front guys. We need to keep going and do our best until the end.
Wolfgang Fischer | Team HRC - Team Manager
Today was another successful day for the HRC Team, not only because Paulo Gonçalves could win the stage, the second stage win in three days, but he also took the overall lead of the rally. Joan Barreda completed a really good stage today, leading the stage up to the refueling point, after which he had a difficult situation that luckily ended up having no further consequence. For Hélder Rodrigues it was also a good stage in which he only made one mistake in navigation, where he lost some minutes. In the end all riders are in the Top10 with Paulo leading the overall standing and now we can prepare our bikes, which have been working perfectly and we focus on tomorrow’s first part of the marathon stage. The next two days will be key but so far it’s going well.