report

Sardegna Rally Race Stage 5 12/06/2014
SardiniaSan Teodoro     >     SardiniaSan Teodoro Total:287km Special stage:170km

Paulo Goncalves and Joan Barreda Gain Valuable World Championship Points in the Sardegna Rally Race

  • Paulo Goncalves
  • Joan Barreda
  • Paulo Goncalves
  • Joan Barreda
  • Paulo Goncalves


After obtaining several victories in the first two rounds of the Raids World Championship, Team HRC put up a good fight to finish on the podium in the very complicated race in Sardegna. It was finally Paulo Goncalves who finished closest to the podium in fourth place.

The last stage of the Sardegna Rally Race has come to an end today in San Teodoro, with Paulo Goncalves taking the victory on the last Special. Gonçalves takes fourth place in the general standings of this rather particular rally. The Team HRC riders have continuously achieved partial wins but the final triumph seems to have eluded them this time. The team has previously won the first two races of the FIM Cross-Country Rallies World Championship.

The final day has once again been very intense for the riders of the team. Hélder Rodrigues, who was a serious podium contender today, was unable to join the fight after a stone got stuck between the chain and the rear sprocket, causing it to break.

Teammate Joan Barreda was also subjected to a series of difficulties; first by avoiding a head on collision with another rider during in the first part of the stage. Later, during the second part, he had a very serious scare while following the race leader Alessandro Botturi, unable to avoid a rock that was in his path due to the dust that the Italian rider was kicking up. The Spaniard was able to continue riding but unable to maintain the same pace he had before the incident.

Joan Barreda has taken seventh place of the seventh edition of the Sardegna Rally Race, ranking second in the provisional general standings of the Championship, with the same amount of points as teammate Paulo Gonçalves. The Portuguese rider aimed to gain positions. He had a complicated first part of the stage but things improved for him in the second part, and he registered the fastest time in the last 50 kilometers. ‘Speedy’ Goncalves has completed a remarkable rally even if the he was prevented from victory after the front brake problems suffered in the previous days during the crucial marathon stage.

The fifth round of the FIM World Championship Cross-Country Rallies will take the Team HRC to Brazil for the Rally Dos Sertoes, that will take between the 21st to 30th of August.

Comment
Paulo Goncalves Paulo Goncalves 4th +22'50
The Sardegna Rally is now over and I am happy with my performance, my navigation, with the CRF450R and the team. Everything worked great but unfortunately the marathon stage did not go well for us. I had two problems with the front brakes that I was unable to fix because we could not benefit from the team assistance at that time. I lost a lot of time during those days being unable to push. In the end I have finished in fourth place overall, it is a bad result. Other than that everything else worked perfectly, which shows that we can rely on the job we have done and the good feeling with the bike.
Joan Barreda Joan Barreda 7th +35'11
It's a pity I wasn’t able to achieve a better result today, I wanted to push and improve my race position. Yesterday my feeling was really good and I wanted to take advantage of it today - even if I was not completely comfortable riding in a particular race such as this one - I believe I could have had a good finish today. At the beginning of the Special I bumped into Faria, lost my concentration and after refueling I wanted to push but with the dust lifted up by Botturi´s bike I had a bit of a scare with a rock, forcing me to slow down.
Helder Rodrigues Helder Rodrigues DNF  
The last day in Sardegna has been very good for me. I was feeling really positive; I had a good start and was in a prime position to fight for the podium. I went for it and pushed but halfway through the Special I had a problem with the rear sprocket. I think it might have been a small stone that probably got caught between the chain and the sprocket and I wasn’t able to finish the race. It is unfortunate for me because up to that point we had done a great job these past few days. We did a lot of work in order to be ready for the race and everything was going so well. We will continue fighting in the upcoming races to get better results in the future.
Wolfgang Fischer Wolfgang Fischer Team HRC - Team Manager
During the last day of the Sardegna Rally, all three riders continued fighting podium finishes. Paulo won the last Special of the day and finished fourth. Joan had a scare with another rider during the Special and luckily nothing came of it. Hélder had a technical problem with his rear wheel that prevented him from finishing the race. Generally speaking we are happy with the job the riders and the team have done. They have not been able to make it to the podium or win the rally but they have taken valuable points for the Championship. Barreda and Gonçalves are still serious contender for the title, currently in second and third place respectively. Next stop will be Brazil.
Martino Bianchi Martino Bianchi Team HRC General Manager
The overall result here in Sardinia does not reflect the real work and performance of our HRC riders. We finished fourth with Gonçalves and seventh with Barreda, but we have seen the level of the riders was very high. We won two stages, one with Paulo and another Joan, who also won the prologue. They have fought for victory and were first and third after the second stage. But we've had a bit of bad luck. The third stage was difficult with many problems that ruined any chances of a podium for Paulo and Joan and the last day Hélder was really unlucky to break the rear sprocket. All we can say is that we have seen the level of our riders, very fast, in good rhythm and are in second and third place in the World Standings, with the same number of points and only seven points behind the new leader Coma. We knew that Sardinia was a great challenge and we have shown that we have a good team and a very good bikes.

Result

Results Stage 5
Pos Rider Machine Time/Gap
1 Joan Pedrero SHERCO 2:46'58
2 Paulo Goncalves Honda 2:48'34
3 Gerard Farrés GAS GAS 2:48'46
4 Marc Coma KTM 2:48'51
5 Olivier Pain YAMAHA 2:48'57
 
11 Joan Barreda Honda 2:59'52 
Final classification Sardegna Rally Race 2014
Pos Rider Machine Time/Gap
1 Alessandro Botturi HUSQVARNA 15:11'05
2 Marc Coma KTM +7'44
3 Gerard Farrés GAS GAS +12'21
4 Paulo Goncalves Honda +22'50
5  Andrea Mancini BETA +25'54
 
7 Joan Barreda Honda +35'11
- Helder Rodrigues Honda -

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