Husqvarna Rallye Team by Speedbrain won their first stage victory on the TE449RR in the Morocco Rally. Paulo Goncalves, the team’s Portuguese rider, took the Erfoud to Zagora stage that featured 291 km (182 miles) of special test. Goncalves finished just three seconds ahead of rival Rodrigues. A great performance too from Joan Barreda who came in fourth in the stage and now sits in third in the overall standings after three days of racing. Australian Matt Fish finished eighth, proving himself to be extremely quick in his first rally on the HusqvarnaTE449RR by Speedbrain.
A special mention should go to Marc Coma who had an accident half way into the special test. We’d like to wish him a speedy recovery before the next Dakar 2013.
Tomorrow looks forward to the fourth of six stages with 250 km of special test and a 162 km transfer.
Joan Barreda: “A really tough stage today. Before refuelling Coma had a horrendous accident. We stopped to help him. Once we got going again I rode alongside Rodrigues to the finish line. Again there was a lot of navigating to be done today, but I’m happy with the result and with the way that the preparations are going for the Dakar.”
Paulo Goncalves: “Today was the fastest stage of the rally so far with such a lot of navigation to do. Today I managed not to make any mistakes and I kept my concentration until the end. This victory was just what was needed for me and for the team who are doing a great job with the bike. The developments are going really well and I’m very confident.”
Matt Fish: “It gets better everyday! Today I made a small mistake just after refuelling, but after I had a good race, alone most of the time, but without any navigational errors. I’ve been learning more and more by the day. It’s a very tough rally this one. ”
Wolfgang Fischer – Team Manager : ”A great day with our first win in the Maroc rally this year. Paulo did really well to take the honours in this stage. Joan put in a very good race too, and Fish surprised me with his steady performance and for the way that he learns so easily. I’m very pleased with the way that the riders and the teams are developing. The bikes have been really great and up until now haven’t given us any problems at all. It’s a real blow what happened to Coma, and the whole team hopes that he makes a speedy recovery. “
Results third stage: 1. Goncalves (Husqvarna Rallye Team by Speedbrain), 2.Rodrigues (Honda) a 3”, 3.Lopez (KTM) a 2’50”, 4. Barreda (Husqvarna Rallye Team by Speedbrain) a 5’28”, 5. Casteau (Yamaha) a 5’49”…..8. Fish (Husqvarna Rallye Ream by Speedbrain) a 8’31”
Overall results after stage third: 1. Rodrigues (Honda),. 2. Despres (KTM) a 11’01, 3.Barreda (Husqvarna Rallye Team by Speedbrain) a 16’21” , 4.Goncalves (Husqvarna Rallye Team by Speedbrain) a 17’35” ,…….11.Fish (Husqvarna Rallye Team by Speedbrain ) a 57’49” .