Tarrés Continues Fighting for Lead in Africa Eco Race with Second Place on Stage Four
Pol Tarrés of the Ténéré Yamaha Rally Team, in partnership with Riders for Health, finished a close runner-up on stage four of the 2024 Africa Eco Race. Continuing to deliver strong result after strong result at this year’s event, the Andorran’s strong performance through the fourth special saw him cross the line just two minutes from the stage winner. Tarrés’ teammate, and stage three winner, Alessandro Botturi, placed third to mark another rewarding day for the team.
Stage four of the AER hosted the longest timed special of the event, covering 463km, and saw almost every competitor compete for well over five hours. With both Ténéré Yamaha Rally Team riders navigating with precision and keeping mistakes to a minimum throughout stage four, Pol and Alessandro safely completed another gruelling special to move one step closer to the event’s halfway point.
Shortly after entering the fourth timed special at the AER, Tarrés soon found himself locked in a battle for the stage win. After passing the second waypoint with a 24-second advantage, Pol would maintain his impressive pace and ultimately post the second quickest time. Following another strong result, Tarrés returns to second in the overall provisional classification.
Buoyed with confidence after his stage three win, Botturi also impressed on the demanding stage four. Knowing the importance of consistent finishes, the Italian placed third, just over two minutes behind Tarrés and four minutes behind the eventual stage winner. An exceptional result considering the distance covered and time spent racing through the Moroccan desert over the course of the day.
Following on from the longest stage of the AER, riders will tackle another timed special on stage five. Comprising desert tracks and sandy plains, accurate navigation will be required in order to secure a strong result on the 404km special. Stage five also marks the final day of racing before the event’s rest day, with the rally action resuming on Monday, January 8.
Special Stage 4 Results
Overall Provisional Classification
Pol Tarrés – P2 (5h00m40s)
Ténéré Yamaha Rally Team
“Another great day for me and I was second again. I was really happy with my riding today and felt great on the bike all day. My navigation was also perfect, so yeah, it’s been another positive stage. We now have one more stage until the rest day so I’m looking forward to that before we head into Mauritania next week. The team has been working really hard and the hard work is showing in mine and Alessandro’s results, so we will keep on pushing to the end.”
Alessandro Botturi – P3 (5h02m42s)
Ténéré Yamaha Rally Team
“A very good stage again today. I tried to push from the beginning to try and make a gap from the very first kilometre. I did make a few small mistakes near the end but nothing too major. I’m still very happy because we set a very good race pace today. We need to continue like today on all the stages, reduce the mistakes a little, and then we will see where we are at the end of the race.”
Ténéré Yamaha Rally Team – Team Manager
“A good day today but for the riders it was a really tough stage. There’s another long stage again tomorrow to finish week one and then we have the rest day. I’m really happy with the performance of both riders today. Pol opened the stage, which is never easy, and he very nearly won it so it was another great ride from him. Alessandro was also strong and finished close behind Pol and they were both racing for over five hours. We are all looking forward to completing tomorrow’s stage and then we can take a rest day, then prepare for week two.”