2024 Dakar Rally Stage 9: Beveren of Monster Energy Honda Team wins, while Sebastien Loeb of the BRX Team is victorious in the cars category
The 9th stage of the gruelling 2024 Dakar Rally saw the competitors traverse from Ha’il to Alula, here the special stage is made up of 417km and the liaison post stage is 222km long. The stage will start out with competitors being able to carry higher speeds but will quickly become very technical, and demand more than usual navigation skills. Apart from that, the terrain also becomes rocky deeper in the stage which makes progress slow. Monster Energy Honda Team’s Adrien Van Beveren, Ricky Brabec and Pablo Qunintannila of the Honda Team finished first, second and third, respectively. Sebastien Loeb of the BRX Team took the win in the cars category and the overall leader Carlos Sainz trailed behind him by 4 minutes 14 seconds. In quads, Giroud of the Yamaha Racing SMX Drag’On Team was the fastest today while Gert Huzink of Jongbloed Dakar Team dominated in the Trucks category in Stage 9.
2024 Dakar Rally Stage 9: Bikes
It was quite the eventful day for the Monster Energy Honda Team as three of its riders finished P1, P2 and P3 at Stage 9. Adrien Van Beveren, Ricky Brabec and Pablo Qunintannila of the Honda Team finished first, second and third, respectively. Toby Price of the Red Bull KTM Factory Team finished fourth and was trailed closely by Hero MotoSports Team Rally’s Ross Branch who improved from his P8 finish yesterday. Beveren has managed to improve his overall lead to 7 minutes and 09 seconds over Ross Branch. Hero MotoSports' Ross Branch lost time due to navigational eros in camel grass and also had trouble navigating a few dunes. But he is determined to claw his way back to P1 and he has four more stages to accomplish this.
Commenting on his stage win today, Adrien Van Beveren said, “It was a tough day but a good day. I finally opened almost 400 km of the stage. Kevin was following and it was good support to take sometimes. It was really, really difficult today. I tried my best, I really tried to be consistent and I think it was a good stage. I gave my all. I have no regrets for today”.
Commenting on his day today, Ross Branch of the Hero MotoSports team said, “Today, I lost a lot of time, but it was tough for me, I couldn’t get going, I couldn’t find a flow. I made a couple of stupid mistakes, but that’s the first bad day of the rally for me, so we’ll take it. At least I’m not opening tomorrow, so maybe we can push again tomorrow. We’ll see how it goes. You have those bad days. I tried to manage it and tried to lose the least time possible and we’ll have to see tonight if anything changes. The pressure is kicking in now for everybody. It’s crunch time and I would have liked to have been up there a little bit closer today, but that’s racing. You can’t have a perfect day every day. You make some mistakes and you just have to try and manage it. I’ve just been trying to keep a cool head for the rest of the afternoon. I had a few moments, so I’m just happy to tick another day off on the Dakar and let’s focus on tomorrow”.
Harith Noah in Stage 9 at the Dakar Rally
Owing to his monumental first place finish in stage 8, Harith was the first to leave in today’s demanding stage. After a tiring 417km special stage followed by a 222km long liaison, Harith Noah riding the number 20 Sherco rally bike finished the stage in P4 in the Rally2 class, 3 minutes, 56 seconds behind the stage winner. In the all bikes category, he finished the stage in 14th place. In the overall Rally2 class, Harith stands proudly in third place and overall he continues to hold on to P13.
2024 Dakar Rally Stage 9: Cars
Sebastian Loeb of the BRX team dominated Stage 9 with Audi Sport’s Carlos Sainz taking 4 minutes and 14 seconds more to finish the stage. This stage win also marked Loeb’s 27th Dakar stage win. Matthieu Serradori of the Century Racing Factory Team finishes the stage in third place But this happened towards the end as Brazilian Lucas Moraes who was all set to take the third step of the podium made some navigational errors. Overall Sainz still leads the pack with Loeb trailing behind by just 20 minutes and 33 seconds, down almost 4 minutes compared to yesterday.
Commenting on his second place finish today, Carlos Sainz of the Team Audi Sport said, “I think I’m happy with the stage, bearing in mind I opened quite a lot. At the end it was very stressful inside the car and very difficult to navigate. The three cars were together, so it was good, I knew I had some support behind me”.
Stage winner and currently overall second place holder Sebastien Loeb of the BRX Team said, “It was a good day for us, a long stage. We had two punctures in the middle of the stage, so at the end I had to be a bit careful and not have a third one. But overall, we took three minutes out of Carlos. The gap is still big, but we still have three stages to go. So, we’ll see and we’ll continue to push for the next three days”.
2024 Dakar Rally Stage 9: Quads
In quads, Giroud of the Yamaha Racing SMX Drag’On Team was the fastest today taking his fourth stage victory of the year while Manuel Andujar of the 7240 Team / Dragon Rally Service was second fastest. Nearly half an hour behind the stage winner was Juraj Varga of the Varga Motorsport Team. Overall Andujar retains his lead with Giroud trailing by 6 minutes and 13 seconds.
2024 Dakar Rally Stage 9: Trucks
The Trucks category saw a change in stage results today with Gert Huzink of Jongbloed Dakar Team clocking the fastest time in the stage while MM Technology Team’s Martin Macik finished a close second just 1 minute and 32 seconds behind Huzink. In third place, 4 minutes and 37 seconds behind the stage winner was Ales Loprais of the Instaforex Loprais Praga team. Overall Macik and his co-drivers of the MM Technology Team hold the lead with Loprais trailing behind by 1 hour 54 minutes and 42 seconds.
The next stage — Stage 10 of the 2024 Dakar Rally will see competitors break ground at Alula for a loop stage to finish in Alula itself. The special stage will be 371km long while the liaison will be 241km long. Stay tuned for all the updates on stage 10 on the evo India social media handle and website.