KP Aravind becomes the only Indian racer to finish Stage 5
Stellar show by Lorenzo Santolino to finish 3rd in the stage
Sherco TVS Rally Factory Team tackled fesh fesh and sand dunes yet again in the second part of Marathon stage of Dakar 2019 stretching from Moquegua to Arequipa. The stage, which was the most challenging in the Rally so far, was delayed due to heavy fog on the route. Post the initial 161 kilometers on the link route, the riders made a group start by waves of ten. Lorenzo Santolino was the best performer from the team and climbed to the third position in stage 5. His outstanding performance in this critical stage has pushed his overall ranking to the 11th position.
Indian rider Aravind KP showcased tremendous grit and jumped up ten rankings to 54th position overall. His steady approach helped him navigate the tough course and maintain momentum despite a minor crash. Adrien Metge went full throttle in this stage, outpacing many riders, but an unfortunate crash near the last waypoint led to loss of time thus having him complete the stage at the 16th position (overall ranking). Michael Metge performed well to tackle the dust and fesh fesh in the special stage. He rode cautiously to reach the finish line in the 24th position (overall ranking).
Commenting on this stage, Aravind KP said, “I am delighted to reach the halfway mark of Dakar 2019 but I need to keep the momentum going as there is long way to go to the finish line. This stage was the toughest but having cleared it, I feel more confident to take on the second half of Dakar 2019 and make my team proud.”
Spaniard Lorenzo Santolino said, “I began the race with the objective to stick with the fastest riders and everything began to fall in place on its own. I completed the stage in a very competitive timing and this has given me immense confidence to push myself and my bike to maintain the momentum for the rest of the Rally. I am thankful to my team to have given me such an excellent bike. I am happy to be able to use the learnings from the team everyday. ”
The riders have been away from their crew and manager for the past two days. Today, the team has a day to rest before Stage 6, where they will ride from Arequipa to San Juan De Marcona.