Putting in a mistake-free performance today in Argentina, Xavier de Soultrait reached the finish of a demanding stage one at the Desafio Ruta 40 rally claiming a solid sixth place result. Continuing his strong run of form at the event, the Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team rider is currently sixth in the provisional overall classification.
Including some fast tracks and demanding navigation, stage one of this year’s Desafio Ruta 40 proved to be a big challenge for all competitors. Making the best of his experience in long and tough stages, de Soultrait reached the finish of the day without any issues.
Currently placed sixth in the rally’s overall standings, the WR450F Rally mounted rider is 17 minutes behind the provisional leader and less than 12 minutes behind the top three. With four long stages yet to be contested in the Argentinean countryside, Xavier has his eyes set on a good overall result at the end of the week-long event.
Suffering minor technical issues, Xavier’s teammates Adrien Van Beveren and Franco Caimi have yet to finish today’s stage one. Both are in contact with the Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team Manager José Leloir, and will continue their effort to reach the finish of the stage so that they can take the start of tomorrow’s stage two of the rally.
Taking riders from Villa Unión to Tinogasta stage two of the Desafio Ruta 40 includes a special stage of 336km in a total of 437km to be run during the day.
Xavier de Soultrait – Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team rider
6th Stage 1 / 6th Overall
“It was a tough stage and I’m happy with my sixth for the day. Today we were faced with challenging navigation so it was key not to get lost. My riding was good and I managed not to make any mistakes throughout the stage. The race pace was quite high and maybe my riding was more on the cautious side. There were parts of the special stage with too much dust and that made things even harder. Overall, I felt great on my bike and I’m looking forward to stage two tomorrow. I feel that everything has been going according to my plans here in Argentina. I want to continue making progress while also remaining as close as possible to the top three in the overall standings.”
Desafio Ruta 40 – Stage 1 – Provisional Classification
1. Sam Sunderland (GBR), KTM, 03:40:55
2. Paulo Goncalves (POR), Honda, 03:44:17, +03:22
3. Kevin Benavides (ARG), Honda, 03:46:48, +05:53
4. Michael Metge (FRA), Honda, 03:48:00, +07:05
5. Pablo Quintanilla (CHL), Husqvarna, 03:52:26, +11:31
6. Xavier de Soultrait (FRA), Yamaha, 03:57:55, +17:00
Desafio Ruta 40 – Provisional Overall Classification [After Stage 1]
1. Sam Sunderland (GBR), KTM, 03:44:33
2. Paulo Goncalves (POR), Honda, 03:47:56, +03:23
3. Kevin Benavides (ARG), Honda, 03:50:37, +05:54
4. Michael Metge (FRA), Honda, 03:51:40, +07:07
5. Pablo Quintanilla (CHL), Husqvarna, 03:56:11, +11:38
6. Xavier de Soultrait (FRA), Yamaha, 04:01:35, +17:02
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