Dakar Rally 2020: Ricky Brabec wins stage 6, Goncalves makes third successive top finish

Ricky Brabec won Stage 6 of the two-wheeler category in the Dakar Rally, while Joan Barreda Bort finished second while Matthius Walker emerged third.

Paulo Gancaves of Hero MotoSports Team Rally during the stage 6 of the Dakar Rally.   -  SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT

Ricky Brabec of Monster Energy Honda Racing won Stage 6 of the two-wheeler category in the Dakar Rally here on Friday. Joan Barreda Bort of Honda Racing finished second while Matthius Walker of KTM Racing emerged third.

For Hero MotoSports Team Rally, Paulo Goncalves was the best rider in Stage 6 finishing eighth. Goncalves led the charge again for the team, putting his vast experience to good use for his third top 10 in a row.

Sebastian Buhler, who has been impressive so far and was well poised to break into the top 15 in the overall rankings for Hero, suffered a technical issue on Friday with his bike and could not finish the stage. As a result, he, too, is now out of contention for the overall results, but like his team-mate Joaquim Rodrigues, he will opt to restart the race again in Stage 7, and still compete for the stage results which will add to his experience.

C. S. Santosh continued to gain in confidence as he, too, made a last dash for a better ranking to finish the stage in the 31st place. In the overall rankings, now with only two riders in contention for the overall results, Santosh leads the team’s rankings at 36th while Goncalves made further gains in rankings and climbed up to 46th.

Goncalves said: "It was a really long day in the rally [on Friday] with 800+ kms to be ridden. It was a beautiful stage with scenery full of sand and the dunes. I decided to go fast today and enjoyed the change of pace a lot. I am happy to deliver another good stage for the team."

With the end of stage 6, the rally has reached the half-way stage. Saturday is a rest day.

The results (provisional)
 

Bike:

Stage 6: 1. Ricky Brabec (Monster Energy Honda Racing) 4h: 36m: 28s; 2. Joan Barreda Bort(Monster Energy Honda Racing) 4: 38:02; 3. Matthius Walkner (RedBull KTM Racing) 4: 39:13; 4. Pablo Quintanilla (Rockstar Energy Husqvarna) 4:41: 23'; Hero MotoSports Team Rally: 8. Paulo Goncalves 4: 44: 44; 27. Joaquim Rodrigues 5:15:13; ; 31. C. S. Santosh 5:26:11; Sebastian Buhler DNF.

Overall rankings after Stage 6:
1.Ricky Brabec 23h: 43m. 47s; 2. Quintanilla (Rockstar Energy Husqvarna) +20m 56s; 3. Toby Price (RedBull KTM Racing) +25m 39s; 36. Santosh +05h 48m 52s; 46. Paulo Goncalves +08h 05m 58s.

Car: (Stage 6): 1.  Stephane Peter Hansel & Paulo Fiuza (Bahrain JCW X-Raid Team) 4h: 27m:17s; 2. Carlos Sainz & Lucas Cruz (Bahrain JCW X-Raid) 4:28:50; 3. Nasser Al-Attiyah & Matthieu Baumel (Toyota Gazoo Racing) 4:30:39.