KTM’s Meo Wins Dakar Rally Stage 8; Yamaha’s Beveren in Overall Lead (Video)

KTM's Meo Wins Dakar Rally Stage 8
KTM's Toby Price and Antoine Meo

2018 Dakar Rally Results, Stage 8 Motorcycles (Video Recap)

Saturday’s stage 7 in 2018 Dakar Rally began a two-day marathon stage, which means riders couldn’t receive any assistance from team members and had to ride Sunday’s stage 8 with the same tires.

Monster Energy Honda’s Joan Barreda Bort claimed stage 7, but it was Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Antoine Meo who claimed the win Sunday. The timed special consisted of 309 miles in wet and slipper conditions, and Meo was able to navigate with precision.

KTM's Meo Wins Dakar Rally Stage 8
KTM’s Toby Price and Antoine Meo

The Frenchman finished the time special in 5H 24:01, 1:08 minutes ahead of Monster Energy Honda CRF 450 Rally pilot Ricky Brabec. Taking the final podium position in Stage 8 of Dakar Rally was Meo’s temamate Toby Price; he finished 2:45 minutes behind.

“I am really happy with my performance today,” Antoine Meo says. “Right from the beginning my plan was to push and try to regain some time on the leaders. I felt really good today, despite the conditions and the length of the special, I didn’t make any mistakes. With tomorrow’s stage cancelled it puts me in the unfortunate position of having to open Tuesday’s stage in the dunes of Argentina. It is always a slight disadvantage to open stages like that, but I’ll do my best and see where I can finish.”

Meo is now sixth overall after eight of stages, 9:56 minutes behind the leader – Yamalube Racing Yamaha’s Adrien van Beveren, who leads Monster Energy Honda’s Kevin Benavides by 22 seconds. In third overall is another Red Bull KTM 450 Rally pilot, Matthias Walkner, who is 6:34 minutes back.

“It is great that we keep the lead at the end of this extremely difficult marathon stage, Adrien van Beveren says. “The rain, the mud and the high altitude made things really hard for us these last two days. It was really exhausting physically but I managed to get two good stage results.

“Yesterday I was second and then today I pushed hard and managed to stay close to the leading group. For big parts of the special stages yesterday and today I found myself opening the tracks. I am feeling great so far on my bike and I also have a great feeling with my navigation. I can be fast while also avoiding navigational mistakes and that is crucial for the coming stages as well. I feel that I’ve put the pieces of the puzzle together and now I know what I need to do during the coming stages.”

KTM's Meo Wins Dakar Rally Stage 8; Yamaha's Beveren in Overall Lead (Video)
Yamaha’s Adrien van Beveren

As for the Americans, Brabec is eighth overall, 31:58 minutes behind van Beveren. Rockstar Energy Husqvarna’s Andrew Short is 23rd overall, 2H 23:31 minutes behind.

Monday’s stage 9 was canceled, official Dakar reports saying: “The organizers of the Dakar had no choice but to cancel stage 9, which was supposed to take place between Tupiza and Salta on Monday. Weather conditions in the area in the last few days are preventing assistance crews from refurbishing race vehicles for tomorrow’s stage after the demanding marathon stage. The field of the Dakar will therefore head to the Salta bivouac by road. The rally will resume with stage 10 from Salta to Belén.”

2018 Dakar Rally Overall Results, Motorcycles (after 9 of 14 stages):

Pos.Exp.Drive-TeamMark-ModelTimeVariationPenality
14

ADRIEN VAN BEVEREN

YAMALUBE YAMAHA OFFICIAL RALLY TEAM27h 22′ 03”
247

KEVIN BENAVIDES

MONSTER ENERGY HONDA TEAM27h 22′ 25”+ 00h 00′ 22”
32

MATTHIAS WALKNER

RED BULL KTM FACTORY TEAM27h 28′ 37”+ 00h 06′ 34”00h 01′ 00”
48

TOBY PRICE

RED BULL KTM FACTORY TEAM27h 29′ 38”+ 00h 07′ 35”
55

JOAN BARREDA BORT

MONSTER ENERGY HONDA TEAM27h 30′ 04”+ 00h 08′ 01”
619

ANTOINE MEO

RED BULL KTM FACTORY TEAM27h 31′ 59”+ 00h 09′ 56”00h 01′ 00”
79

STEFAN SVITKO

SLOVNAFT RALLY TEAM27h 53′ 58”+ 00h 31′ 55”00h 01′ 00”
820

RICKY BRABEC

MONSTER ENERGY HONDA TEAM27h 54′ 01”+ 00h 31′ 58”
93

GERARD FARRES GUELL

HIMOINSA RACING TEAM.28h 00′ 02”+ 00h 37′ 59”
1040

JOHNNY AUBERT

GAS GAS MOTORSPORT28h 32′ 05”+ 01h 10′ 02”00h 04′ 00”
1133

DANIEL NOSIGLIA JAGER

HT RALLY RAID HUSQVARNA RACING28h 40′ 42”+ 01h 18′ 39”
1210

PABLO QUINTANILLA

ROCKSTAR ENERGY HUSQVARNA FACTORY RACING28h 47′ 26”+ 01h 25′ 23”
1360

JONATHAN BARRAGAN NEVADO

GAS GAS MOTORSPORT28h 52′ 58”+ 01h 30′ 55”00h 05′ 00”
1415

LAIA SANZ

KTM FACTORY RACING TEAM28h 53′ 28”+ 01h 31′ 25”00h 02′ 00”
1568

JOSE IGNACIO CORNEJO FLORIMO

MONSTER ENERGY HONDA TEAM28h 55′ 13”+ 01h 33′ 10”
1677

LUCIANO BENAVIDES

KTM FACTORY RACING TEAM28h 59′ 16”+ 01h 37′ 13”00h 03′ 00”
1729

DANIEL OLIVERAS CARRERAS

HIMOINSA RACING TEAM.28h 59′ 42”+ 01h 37′ 39”
1861

ORIOL MENA

HERO MOTOSPORTS TEAM RALLY29h 05′ 00”+ 01h 42′ 57”
1927

DIEGO MARTIN DUPLESSIS

MEC TEAM29h 14′ 46”+ 01h 52′ 43”00h 10′ 00”
2012

JUAN PEDRERO GARCIA

SHERCO TVS RALLY FACTORY29h 17′ 31”+ 01h 55′ 28”00h 01′ 00”
2117

ARMAND MONLEON

DAMING RACING TEAM29h 21′ 17”+ 01h 59′ 14”
2244

RODNEY FAGGOTTER

YAMALUBE YAMAHA OFFICIAL RALLY TEAM29h 41′ 34”+ 02h 19′ 31”
2354

ANDREW SHORT

ROCKSTAR ENERGY HUSQVARNA FACTORY RACING29h 45′ 34”+ 02h 23′ 31”
2418

ALESSANDRO BOTTURI

BOTTURI ALESSANDRO29h 49′ 13”+ 02h 27′ 10”
2534

MARC SOLA TERRADELLAS

HIMOINSA RACING TEAM.30h 51′ 05”+ 03h 29′ 02”