MotorcycleDaily.com – Motorcycle News, Editorials, Product Reviews and Bike Reviews

Motorcycle News, Editorials, Product Reviews and Bike Reviews

2014 Dakar Stage Four

Yamaha Factory Racing’s Olivier Pain kept his head today on the second part of the first marathon stage of the 2014 Dakar Rally, San Juan to Chilecito. The Frenchman kept a good pace to wrap up the stage in fifth position, just over 7mins from the front to move to fifth overall in the standings.

Yamaha’s new Dakar challenger Cyril Despres experienced a frustrating set back on today’s special stage. The defending champion suffered an electrical issue just 9km from the end of the stage whilst running as virtual leader of the rally. The support holding his Iritrack broke, causing a short circuit in the electrical system that brought his bike to a halt leaving him sixth overall and 41 minutes down on the leader. Michael Metge was also to suffer his share of bad luck, taking a wrong turn that resulted in a 50km detour off the route. The set back left him in 38th place on the stage.

Olivier Pain
Yamaha Factory Racing

“A marathon stage is always a stress, always a challenge. You have to manage everything on your own, take care of the bike, take care of yourself and there’s plenty that can go wrong. Last night for example I had to make a bracket for the exhaust out a piece of metal I found on the ground. And while you’re doing that you’re worrying about the fact that you should be sleeping to find the strength for the next day. All of that to say I’m delighted to be here this evening with both myself and my bike in one piece. With everything that has happened over the last two days the fact that I am now up in fifth place overall is almost a detail – but a good detail nevertheless!”

Cyril Despres
Yamaha Factory Racing

“Everything was going perfectly and the strategy I’d devised with Mika was paying off handsomely. 170 kilometres from the end I was riding with Marc (Coma) and Joan (Barreda) and shortly after that Marc and I managed to break away and I became the virtual overall leader. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t disappointed but I’ve been here before and still reached the top of the final podium. It would have been so easy to have abandoned out in the special and catch the next plane home, but I love this race, I love riding my bike and most of all I love a challenge. And as long as I believe I have a fighting chance I’ll do exactly that – keep fighting.”

Michael Metge
Yamaha Factory Racing

“Just like Cyril’s, my day was going really well. The bike felt good and I was in form and was thinking that with all the navigation Cyril is going to pull back some time. Then at kilometre 247 there was a modification to the road book and you had to find a piste on the left. Except the rain had washed it away and I took the wrong Rio. Unfortunately the next note was 25 kilometres later on, which meant that in total I rode 50 kilometres extra through big rocks and lost a load of time.”