W2RC 2023
Round 1

A short prologue to break the ice

sa Dakar Rally in Saudi Arabia

The action is finally on at the Dakar Rally 2023! It was just a symbolic start today, with a short 13 kilometers prologue with start and finish at the Sea Camp bivouac. Breaking the ice, this was certainly a different way to say goodbye to 2022.

A short prologue to break the ice

The 45th edition of the Dakar is open and Monster Energy Honda Team riders can’t wait for the excitement of the arduous challenge ahead with 15 more days of racing in the deserts of Saudi Arabia.

Dakar winner Ricky Brabec was the strongest rider within the team, with a 10th place, followed by Pablo Quintanilla (12th place). The American will be allowed to choose his position for the first stage, a privilege that won’t be granted to Quintanilla, Adrien Van Beveren (16th place) and Jose Ignacio Cornejo (27th place).

Stage number one will keep the caravan still at the Sea Camp bivouac for one more day, but playtime is over as the rally starts to unfold. A special stage of 369 km plus a 235 of liaison will make the day, with sandy tracks followed by stony sections with a fair bit of gravel. So it’s time to test everybody’s dune-surfing abilities in the final stretch. The day won’t be particularly challenging, but will for sure be a chance to find the right rhythm and balance.

Ruben Faria
Ruben Faria
Monster Energy Honda Team
This prologue was just a warm-up for the next two weeks of the race. Ricky will be able to choose his starting position and Pablo will also have fast riders in front of him and also behind, which is good for the rhythm. Adrien also finished in a good position and the race is just starting - they have done just less than 13 km. Nacho was not lucky and fell in the first corner, but he will open the track tomorrow and that can be a nice challenge.

Ricky Brabec
Ricky Brabec 2
Monster Energy Honda Team
With my result I am still able to choose my starting order, so I am a lot happier than I was in the last two years when I had to start in the front. It was only 13 km but it was important. Our team is healthy and strong to fight back in the days to come.

Pablo Quintanilla
Pablo Quintanilla 7
Monster Energy Honda Team
The prologue was fast, a little bit slippery and I went as fast as I could. I had a quite clean run and avoided major mistakes. This was a good day and I am in a good position to start the race tomorrow. This was also very important to break the ice and put anxiety aside.

Adrien Van Beveren
Adrien Van Beveren 42
Monster Energy Honda Team
I felt good on my Honda CRF 450 Rally, I was going well. My feeling was to ride smart and clean and that was accomplished. The result is correct, although I expected a better time. Now let’s focus on the race, because we really have a long way to go.

José Ignacio Cornejo
José Ignacio Cornejo 11
Monster Energy Honda Team
I wanted to do a solid prologue, but I was not lucky and fell in the first corner. I made a mistake and it was really slippery. But now we have to stay positive, this is just the warm-up and we have so many days to race.

Pos. Num. Rider Team Time Gap Penalty
1 8 Toby Price Red Bull KTM Factory Racing 00:08'22 - -
2 18 Daniel Sanders Red Bull Gas Gas Factory Racing 00:08'23 +00:00'01 -
3 16 Ross Branch Hero MotoSports Team Rally 00:08'31 +00:00'09 -
4 5 Joan Barreda Monster Energy JB Team 00:08'31 +00:00'09 -
5 47 Kevin Benavides Red Bull KTM Factory Racing 00:08'31 +00:00'09 -
6 27 Joaquim Rodrigues Hero MotoSports Team Rally 00:08'32 +00:00'10 -
11 2 Ricky Brabec Monster Energy Honda Team 00:08'36 +00:00'14 -
12 7 Pablo Quintanilla Monster Energy Honda Team 00:08'38 +00:00'16 -
17 42 Adrien Van Beveren Monster Energy Honda Team 00:08'42 +00:00'20 -
81 11 Jose Ignacio Cornejo Monster Energy Honda Team 00:09'37 +00:01'15 -

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