Teamwork was on the agenda for the Red Bull KTM Factory team in Stage Twelve of the Dakar 2013 when overall leader Cyril Despres worked with teammate and support rider Ruben Faria of Portugal to help him gain some overall time on KTM rival Chaleco Lopez, now racing on his home territory of Chile.

Cyril Despes Dakar 2013

The tactics worked well and at the end of the stage Cyril Despres and Ruben Faria had secured 1-2 in the overall standings with just two stages to go to Saturday’s finish line in Santiago, Chile. Faria trailed Despres by 5:39 minutes in the overall standings when riders arrived at the finish in Copiapo but more importantly, the Portuguese rider had gained around three minutes advantage on Lopez.

Despres said the first part of the stage was very fast and then riders entered the big dunes of the Atacama Desert where good navigation was decisive. “I didn’t want to open the track today so I let the others go,” Despres said. “It was also important for me today to try and help Ruben. He’s been helping me now as support rider in all the Dakar Rallies since 2012 so today I decided to help him to try and stay in second place overall. I think he did well and I’m happy for us.”

Stage Twelve went to Dutch rider Frans Verhoeven with Faria just 1:38 minutes behind. Next fastest KTM factory rider was Jakub Przgonski of the Factory B Team in sixth place just over four minutes behind. He too held off Chaleco Lopez who finished seventh. KTM factory rider Joan Pedrero finished twelfth and Despres coasted in fourteenth place. The team’s American rider Kurt Caselli put in another strong ride to finish 13:26 minutes behind the leader and despite a heavy penalty of 3:20 hours for missed checkpoints and waypoint in Stage Eight is still in a creditable twenty-fifth place in his first ever Dakar.

Friday is the penultimate stage of the 2013 edition as riders head for Santiago and travel from Copiapo south along the Pacific Coast to La Serena in a 735 km ride of which there is another long timed special of 441 km.

Results Dakar 2013 – Stage Twelve (Provisional)

Fiambala to Copiapo: total distance 715 km, timed special 319 km

  • 1. Franz Verhoeven (NL), Yamaha, 3:49:15 hours
  • 2. Ruben Faria (P), KTM, +1:38 min
  • 3. Joan Barreda (E), Husqvarna, +3:01
  • 4. Alain Duclos (F), Sherco, +3:17
  • 5. Helder Rodrigues (P), Honda, +3:35
  • 6. Jakub Przygonski (PL), KTM, +4:07
  • 7. Chaleco Lopez (RCH), KTM, +4:47
  • 8. Gerard Farres (E), Honda, +5:02
  • 9. Javier Pizzolito (RA), Honda, +5:22
  • 10. Oliver Pain (F), Yamaha, +5:32

Other KTM Dakar 2013

  • 11. Ivan Jakes (SK), KTM, +5:58
  • 12. Joan Pedrero (E), KTM, +6:17
  • 14. Cyril Despres (F), KTM, +9:15
  • 18. Kurt Caselli (USA), KTM, +13:26
  • 21. Riaan Van Niekerk (RSA), KTM, +14:59

Standings Dakar 2013 after 12 of 14 stages

  • 1. Despres, 37:46:59 hours
  • 2. Faria, +5:39 min
  • 3. Lopez, +13:40
  • 4. Jakes, +20:16
  • 5. Alessandro Botturi (I), Husqvarna, +34:52
  • 6. Pedrero, +41:14
  • 7. Pain, +1:03:29 h
  • 8. Verhoeven, +1:05:22
  • 9. Rodrigues, +1:10:44
  • 10. Pizzolito, +1:19:20

Other KTM Dakar 2013

  • 11. Przygonski, +1:25:37 h
  • 14. Van Niekerk, +1:41:44
  • 16. Ben Grabham (AUS), KTM, +2:32:29
  • 25. Caselli, +4:00:45