Husqvarna Rallye Team by Speedbrain notched up another noteworthy performance. Nazca, one of Peru’s most famous archaeological cities played host to today’s stage, where it was the turn of Paulo Goncalves to take the podium in second place just seconds behind winner Lopez. Paulo would have been in third overall place were it not for a fifteen minute penalty picked up for a first engine change. Alessandro Botturi put in a great performance too, taking fourth place in spite of a fall.
After three stages, the top Husqvarna rider in the overall standings is the private Spanish rider Jordi Viladoms, a kind of ‘special customer’ of the Husqvarna Rallye Team by Speedbrain, who sits in eighth place in the overall table.
Tomorrow the treacherous stage of Nazca Arequipa awaits with 718 km (449 miles) of which 289 km (180 miles) are special test.
Paulo Goncalves: "I really pushed it today and am happy about the podium. It was a shame that I got stuck in a dune and lost about a minute trying to get going again. I wanted to win and came pretty close to it."
Alessandro Botturi: "What a giant roll I did!!! A 100 km in I jumped badly over a dune and turned over. Luckily I was alright. Then I had to slow down due to the enormous amount of dust."
Joan Barreda: "I was going really well until 40 km in, when I landed after a jump and broke the rear wheel. I was forced to stop to try and sort out the damage, but there was nothing I could do about it. So I had to carry on at a slower pace until the end of the special. A shame! But that’s the Dakar. Tomorrow is another day!"
Team Manager, Wolfgang Fischer: "Today was the reverse of the situation for all our riders. Paulo and Alessandro did well, Joan and Matt had problems. It was a shame about Joan’s technical set-backs, he was really going flat out until then. Tomorrow will be a really hard stage. Joan and Matt start out from behind and will have the chance to make up ground."