Dry grass branches collected in the engine protection and caught fire near the hot exhaust during the extreme riding conditions in the deep sand.
Today´s stage five from Chilecito to Tucuman was characterised by very hot temperatures over 40 degrees and a lot of sand and navigation in dry vegetation. Exactly because of this dry vegetation, Paulo Goncalves´ bike became the victim of a fire accident.
Joan Barreda meanwhile battled with the very delicate navigation. The Spaniard dropped back to second place overall.
Paulo Goncalves: "After having lost my chances to fight for a top position following the problems during the marathon stage, I tried my best today to support Joan Barreda. I had a good pace, leading the race halfway through the stage. In the boiling temperatures I suddenly felt my feet getting hot, and I saw that my bike was burning. I jumped off and tried to extinguish the fire with sand, but I could not fight it, the bike burnt down completely. I am extremely disappointed, after all the hard work during the year to be out of the race in this way."
Joan Barreda: "At the beginning of the stage I lost some minutes due to problems with the fuel system, but I could catch up pretty good and found a decent speed and rhythm in the endless sand whoops. At the end of the stage it was very difficult to find the right way through various dry riverbeds, but I could manage quite well. Unfortunately a few km before the finish I had another a problem with the fuel system, and it took me valuable time to fix it and continue towards the finish. I am happy to be back at the bivouac after this tough day. At least I am still second in the overall classification. We are still in a very good position in the race and we will do everything the next days to assure a top result."
Provisional result - Dakar 2014, Stage 5:
1. Marc Coma (ESP, KTM) 03:02:08 hrs
2. Jordi Viladoms (ESP, KTM) +00:12:54
3. Jakub Przygonski (POL, KTM) +00:22:45
4. Helder Rodrigues (PRT, Honda) +00:25:53
5. Riaan van Niekerk (ZAF, KTM) +00:32:04
6. Juan Carlos Salvatierra (BOL, Speedbrain) +00:33:12
7. Juan Pedrero Garcia (ESP, Sherco) +00:34:03
8. Stefan Svitko (SVK, KTM) +00:36:38
9. Robert van Pelt (NLD, Honda) +00:37:04
10. Daniel Gouet (CHL, Honda) +00:37:53
17. Joan Barreda (ESP, Honda) +00:44:20
Provisional overall standings:
1. Marc Coma (ESP, KTM) 18:45:11 hrs
2. Joan Barreda (ESP, Honda) +00:41:10
3. Francisco Lopez (CHL, KTM) +00:53:41
4. Jordi Viladoms (ESP, KTM) +00:58:58
5. Alain Duclos (FRA, Sherco) +01:02:13
6. Olivier Pain (FRA, Yamaha) +00:29:38
7. Jakub Przygonski (POL, KTM) +01:14:27
8. Cyril Despres (FRA, Yamaha) +01:23:01
9. Jeremias Israel Esquerre (CHL, Speedbrain) +01:23:30
10. Stefan Svitko (SVK, KTM) +01:30:13