2013 Dakar Ends in Full KTM Glory [Video]
It's been a great rally for KTM as the Austrian manufacturer finished the 2013 Dakar in the first 5 positions, smashing the competition. This year's favorite Cyril Despres, proved once more that riding skills, experience and a good strategy pay off. Focused on riding on the safe side and making as little navigation mistakes as possible, Despres managed to secure his 5th Dakar title and is one short to reaching Peterhansel's record.
Ruben Faria rode his KTM in the second podium place. As Despres' lieutenant, he managed to stay close to the Frenchmanm but Chilean Chaleco Lopez gave him a hard time until the very last kilometers of the Dakar. Hoping to be able to ride way faster with a new engine, Lopez switched the power unit, taking the 15 minute penalty.
However, he could not make up for the difference and missed his opportunity to squeeze between the two Red Bull KTM riders in front of him. Notable riding should also be mentioned for Jakes and Pedrero, who came in positions 4 and 5.
Yamaha managed two bikes in the top 10, with Pain in 6th and Verhoeven in the 9th, while Honda's new bikes carried Helder Rodrigues and Pizzolito in honorable places 7 and 8. By all means, seeing Goncalves and Husqvarna in the overall place 10 at the end of the 2013 Dakar means a huge success for the BMW-owned manufacturer.
Even if Joan Barreda Bort had serious mechanical problems costing him 3 and a half hours and had subsequently crashed pretty bad, almost retiring, the 2013 Dakar proved that there is a great future for the Husqvarna machines. If it hadn't been for the severe mechanical failure which forfeited his winning chances, we could have expected to see Barreda among the front pack, fighting hard for the podium.
Well, now a calm resting period will follow for these tough riders. However, bike updates are soon to follow as gathered data will start transforming in new solutions, new testing and all, granting another breathtaking race in the next year's Dakar.
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