From bivouac to bivouac TransAnatolia Rally Friday was an amazing day

Inspiration Friday: Fascinating TransAnatolia Rally
Ténéré World Raid Team on the Cusp of History After Day 6 At TransAntolia
The Yamaha Ténéré World Raid Team, in partnership with Riders for Health, enjoyed a strong Friday at the TransAnatolia as Pol Tarrés and Alessandro Botturi secured a stage win apiece to maintain their 1-2, respectively, in the overall general classification with just one more day left in the rally.
Heading into the sixth day in Turkey, Tarrés had an advantage of 11 minutes and 23 seconds over his teammate Botturi in second, with a further 20-second gap back to the rider in third.  It is the first time that Tarrés has led a rally raid event, and the fact the duo occupy first and second in the overall standings is even more remarkable because they are competing on a twin-cylinder adventure bike in the B2 class against the 450cc prototype machines in the B1 category.
Friday at the TransAnatolia was the shortest day on the schedule and began with a 33km liaison from the bivouac in Afyonkarshir to the start of the 64.67km Special Stage 12. Then they faced another 25.42km liaison to Dumlupinar for the start of the 102.21km thirteenth stage before a final 43.03km liaison to the bivouac in Simav.
Tarrés got the day off to the perfect start, as he belied his lack of rally experience to recover the strongest from a slight navigational error that affected nearly every rider to storm to victory on Special Stage 12. The Andorran set a time of 56 minutes and 32 seconds to win by a margin of 42 seconds and extend his overall lead.
On the 13th stage, he kept his cool to finish in second with a time of one hour, 34 minutes and 16 seconds, just eight seconds behind Botturi and maintaining his 100% podium record at the rally. This saw Tarrés end the day on top, and he now has a 12-minute and 41-second gap lead over his teammate at the head of the overall general classification with just two stages to go.
Botturi showed his trademark determination to bounce back from a tricky Thursday that saw him suffer a minor crash before mounting a superb charge to limit the damage to his gap over the rider in third overall. Showing no ill effects from his off, the Italian powered through the rocky trails to end the first stage in third, with a time of 57 minutes and 31 seconds, just 59s behind winner Tarrés.
The 49-year-old then put the hammer down on his GYTR-Kitted Ténéré 700 World Rally during the next special, winning his first stage of the rally after setting a time of one hour, 34 minutes, and eight seconds. This saw Botturi preserve his second place in the overall general classification and extend his advantage over his nearest rival to four minutes and 22 seconds.
There is just one more day of action at the TransAnatolia standing between the Ténéré World Raid Team and what would be a historic first overall 1-2 in the general classification. Day seven involves an 18.22km liaison from the bivouac in Simav to the start of the 54.94km Raiders Road Special Stage 14. The riders then have a long 198.40km liaison to the beginning of the final special of the rally, the 36.59km stage 15 in Izmir, before a last 22.39km liaison to the podium ceremony.
Special Stage 12 Results
Special Stage 13 Results
General Classification after Day 6
Pol Tarrés – P1 (14h35m48s)
Yamaha Ténéré World Raid Team
“Today was an amazing day. My speed was good, but I am really proud of my navigation, as lots of other riders had trouble today. I won another stage and came second to Alessandro in the second special to finish the day on top. I also extended my lead in the general classification, so it was an almost perfect day for me, and I still cannot believe I am leading. Tomorrow, I need to stay calm and make sure I do not make any mistakes so I can bring it home.”
Alessandro Botturi – P2 (14h48m02s)
Yamaha Ténéré World Raid Team
“I am thrilled with how today went. Yesterday was tough with the crash, so it was important to bounce back quickly. I made the same mistake as everyone else on the first stage of the day but then recovered to take my first victory of the rally during the second special, with Pol making it a 1-2. I also increased my lead over the rider in third in the general classification by over four minutes. With just two stages left to go on Friday, we need to ensure we stay focused and secure the best result possible.”
Marc Bourgeois
Yamaha Ténéré World Raid Team – Team Manager
“The team did a great job today. Our riders found the perfect balance between speed and navigation, and while everyone made a small mistake, Pol did an amazing job to recover and win the first stage. Then, for Alessandro to win the second special and for Pol to make it a 1-2 was amazing. We have to stay focused for the final day, as it is a long day of liaisons, but with only two short special stages. Pol will open, so he will need to stay focused. We have a great atmosphere in the team, and our aim is for both riders to finish strongly and maintain our 1-2 in the general classification.”
Media Images »
The Great Adventure
Botturi and Tarrés are racing together at the TransAnatolia for the first time since they re-wrote the history books at the 2022 AER. An exclusive behind-the-scenes documentary about their extraordinary exploits in Africa, “The Great Adventure”, is out now on Amazon Prime Video for subscribers in Italy and coming soon to other regions. The hour-long film, produced by Yamaha Motor Europe and directed by Francesco Teo, has also been nominated for an award at the prestigious International Motor Film Awards, and you can watch it here.
Join Botturi and Tarrés at the 2023 Africa Eco Race
After such monumental exploits in 2022, Yamaha Motor Europe and Riders for Health, powered by Two Wheels for Life, are giving two people the chance to join the Ténéré World Raid Team on the 2023 AER. The team works in partnership with the charity to raise awareness of their tremendous work in supplying, managing, and maintaining motorcycles for health-focused operations in Africa.
The incredible prize on offer includes return flights to Dakar, Senegal for two people, two nights bed and breakfast at the 5-star King Fahed hotel in Dakar, plus the chance to meet and greet the Ténéré World Raid Team during the podium ceremony at Lac Rose.
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