Red Bull KTM’s Marc Coma made a solid start in his bid for victory in the Rally dos Sertoes in Brazil on Sunday when he finished fastest in the opening stage of this 2600 km event.
The Spanish rider, a Red Bull athlete completed the stage of 216 km, of which 155 km was timed special between Goiania in central Brazil traveling southeast to Caldas Novas in one hour 55 minutes 28. He finished with a narrow 1 minute 22 ahead of second placed Helder Rodrigues of Portugal. Paolo Goncalves was third, two minutes off the leader’s time.
Sunday’s stage required a lot of concentration according to Coma: “It was only quite a short stage but we can say the terrain was quite tricky. You have to pay close attention because there are a lot of animals and fences and other obstacles and also we were flying all the time because there were many jumps. Every time you have to judge how and where to land. I am happy though that we found the good rhythm today.”
Coma’s official KTM factory teammates were also well placed after the opening stage with Jordi Viladoms of Spain in fourth place 2.32 off the pace, Briton Sam Sunderland in sixth at four minutes 31 and Ruben Faria finishing seventh only two seconds behind Sunderland. The KTM factory riders compete on the KTM 450 Rally machine.
The rally, which concludes on August 30, takes riders from Caldas Novas to Catalao in Stage Two on Monday for Stage Two.
Coma entered the competition with a six-point lead in the FIM World Cross Countries Rally Championship on Joan Barreda and Goncalves is looking to consolidate that lead this week. The three times Dakar Rally winner was second in the Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge, the Sealine Rally in Qatar and the Sardinia Rally, which has more a characteristic of an enduro event than a classic rally. Factory riders did not compete in the scheduled Rd. 3 in Egypt due to the instability in the country at the time.
The World Championship concludes with the Morocco Rally in October.
Note: KTM Racing News on the dos Sertoes rally will also be filed on August 27 and after the final stage on August 30. KTM Results Service will be send out every day of the rally.
More at www.sertoes.com
Results Stage One (unofficial at the time of filing)
Goiânia – Caldas Novas: 216 km including 155 km of timed special.
1, Marc Coma, ESP, KTM 1 hour 55.28
2, Helder Rodrigues, POR, Honda, 1:56.51
3, Paolo Goncalves, POR, Honda, 1:57.29
4, Jordi Viladoms, ESP, KTM, 1:58.01
5, Jean Azevedo, BRA, Honda, 1:58.04
6, Sam Sunderland, GBR, KTM 2:00.00
7, Ruben Faria, POR, KTM, 2:00.01
10, David Casteu, FRA, KTM 6.53
Image courtesy KTM Racing