Getting his participation in round four of the FIM Cross-Country Rallies World Championship off to the best possible start, Adrien Van Beveren has posted the fastest time in the opening Prologue at Argentina’s Desafio Ruta 40. Adrien’s Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team partners Xavier de Soultrait and Franco Caimi have gotten things underway by claiming fifth and eighth respectively in the short Prologue around San Juan.
Including a fast-paced 5km-long special stage the opening stage at this year’s Desafio Ruta 40 saw all three Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team riders finish without any issues. Suffering a small mistake early on Van Beveren demonstrated some good speed to kick off the event with an impressive stage victory.
Completing his run five seconds after his Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team partner, Xavier de Soultrait secured fifth in the Prologue. Finishing another two seconds behind de Soultrait, team rookie Franco Caimi was eighth for the day.
Heading north and towards the city of Villa Unión, stage one of the Desafio Ruta 40 includes a special stage of 321.90km. The total distance to be covered by all riders on Sunday is 512.51km.
Adrien Van Beveren – Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team rider
“It feels good to start this event with a win at the Prologue. I’m happy with my performance today. I just made one small mistake going into the first corner but then I kept my head down and pushed hard all the way until the end of the short special stage. I’m feeling really good on my bike at the moment and I want to keep this great feeling going into tomorrow’s long stage one. I know my speed is on point and I proved that today. But rally racing is not only about speed, it’s more of a mental game and you need to stay focused on avoiding mistakes. That’s exactly what I’m planning to do tomorrow. I want to continue taking things step by step and hopefully a good overall result will come our way.”
Xavier de Soultrait – Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team rider
“It was a short but really fast Prologue and I really enjoyed it. Without any major navigational challenges it was more like a quick moto around San Juan. I made a small mistake right after the start but other than that everything went fine and I’m satisfied with fifth for the day. The time differences are just minor and there’s a long – long way to go still at this event. My plan for the week is to continue learning while also trying to get more racing miles under my belt. Last week in Chile I was riding more cautiously. It was my first event some time and the feeling was already good on the bike. The tracks here in Argentina are pretty similar to what we’ll face at the Dakar, so it’s a great opportunity to further improve on my navigation.”
Franco Caimi – Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team rider
“It was a good day for me. I might not have gotten the best result in the short Prologue but I feel good on my Yamaha. I made a mistake today losing time in a corner and that kind of messed with my overall time. The real race starts tomorrow. Stage one will be long and challenging. From what we’ve learned so far it will include some sand sections and some hard packed high speed trails. It feels good to be racing in front of my home crowd and I really want to fight for a good overall result at this event.”
Desafio Ruta 40 – Prologue – Provisional Classification
1. Adrien Van Beveren (FRA), Yamaha, 03:35
2. Sam Sunderland (GBR), KTM, 03:38, +00:03
3. Paulo Goncalves (POR), Honda, 03:39, +00:04
3. Kevin Benavides (ARG), Honda, 03:39, +00:04
5. Xavier de Soultrait (FRA), Yamaha, 03:40, +00:05
5. Michael Metge (FRA), Honda, 03:40, +00:05
8. Franco Caimi (ARG), Yamaha, 03:42, +00:07
Race Schedule – Desafio Ruta 40 2017
Prologue | Aug 26 | San Juan | SS: 5.6km | Total: 26.74km
Stage 1 | Aug 27 | San Juan to Villa Unión | SS: 321.90km | Total: 512.51km
Stage 2 | Aug 28 | Villa Unión to Tinogasta | SS: 336.91km | Total: 437.36km
Stage 3 | Aug 29 | Tinogasta to Belén | SS: 303.97km | Total: 489.20km
Stage 4 | Aug 30 | Belén to Tafí del Valle | SS: 309.14km | Total: 535.84km
Stage 5 | Aug 31 | Tafí del Valle to Tucumán | SS: 180.70km | Total: 327,80km