Ténéré World Raid Team Continue the Charge During Stage 3 at Africa Eco Race
The Yamaha Ténéré World Raid Team rose to the challenge during a tricky Stage 3 at the Africa Eco Race, with Pol Tarrés securing his career-best rally result in fourth and his teammate Alessandro Botturi showing great determination to overcome a technical issue to finish ninth.
After Italian Botturi secured the team’s first-ever rally stage victory on Wednesday, Thursday’s special was another challenging 465.89km of rocky sections and sandy tracks that winded its way from Tagounite to Assa in Morocco.
Tarrés started from 11th and immediately made headway in the early part of the stage. Pushing hard, the 29-year-old Spaniard kept up an impressive pace and did not make a single mistake to bring his Ténéré 700 World Raid home in fourth in only his second competitive rally event.
His time of 6:11.37 saw him cross the finish line 51 minutes and 31 seconds behind the winner. This result means he moves up two places in the general classification to seventh with an overall time of 15:09.14, 2 hours 41 minutes and 33 seconds off the leader, and second in the +700 class.
For the winner of the previous two Africa Eco Races and seven-time Dakar finisher Botturi, Stage 3 proved to be a real test of character. The Italian, who took victory in Stage 2, started first and made good progress before a technical issue saw him forced to stop for over two hours as he carried out running repairs.
The 47-year-old showed his fortitude to fix the issue and remount his bike to get it to the finish in a respectable ninth place with a 7:30.51. “Bottu” is now sixth overall in the general classification, 26 minutes and 50 seconds ahead of his teammate, with an overall time of 14:42.24, and still leads the +700 class.
The Yamaha Ténéré World Raid Team, in partnership with Riders for Health, returns to action for the 455.42km Stage 4 on Friday, starting from the bivouac in Assa and ending in Rems El-Quebir. Everyone in the Yamaha Ténéré World Raid Team offers their sincere condolences to the family, friends and team of Portuguese rider Armindo Carreiras Neves, who sadly passed away during Wednesday’s Stage 2.
If you would like to go on your own two-wheeled adventures like Tarrés and Botturi, Yamaha Motor Europe has teamed up with Riders for Health, powered by Two Wheels for Life, to give you a chance to win one of the official rally-spec Ténéré 700 World Raid bikes used by the team. To find out more about the project and enter the prize draw, click here.
Pol Tarrés – P4 (6:11.37)
Yamaha Ténéré World Raid Team
“Today was hard. The stage was challenging, and the terrain made the navigation tough, so I am completely exhausted as I worked very hard, but I am pleased as I didn’t make a single mistake. I followed the roadbook and tried to maintain a steady rhythm and ensure I was on the right track. One by one, I started to pass the other riders, so I knew I had a good pace. I am delighted to have finished in fourth; it is my best stage result, and there is a lot more to come, so I can’t wait to get going again tomorrow.”
Alessandro Botturi – P9 (7:30.51)
Yamaha Ténéré World Raid Team
“It was tough today, as the stage was hard, and I had a small technical issue that cost me a couple of hours. Luckily, it was not a major problem, and I managed to fix it and get the bike going again. It was hard work, but I still managed to finish in the top ten, and I am sixth in the general classification, so while it was not ideal, there is still a long way to go, and we are still in the race.”
Yamaha Ténéré World Raid Team – Team Manager
“Today, I am proud of both riders. First of all, Pol did a great job, he was consistent and is growing every day, and that is what we want from him. He is still learning, and it is great to see how quickly he is adapting and also to see him having fun. Alessandro, unfortunately, had a technical issue during the stage, but I am so proud of how he reacted. He stayed focused and realised that our goal is to get the bikes to the finish. Yesterday he won the stage, today, he was determined to repair the issue and get the bike back to the bivouac, and he still managed to finish in ninth. Both riders have shown a great mindset in different circumstances, and we look forward to Stage 4.”