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Yamaha Set To Battle For The Overall Podium During Dakar Rally’s Final Two Stages | Latest

Adrien Van Beveren currently finds himself fourth overall after Stage 10 of the Dakar Rally.

With two stages left to be contested the Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team rider is now three minutes behind a provisional top three overall result.

Promised by rally organisers to be the most technically demanding stage during the 2017 Dakar Rally, stage 10 from Chilecito to San Juan certainly lived up to everyone’s expectations. Entering today’s 450km-long timed special determined to retain or even improve on his third place overall result, Van Beveren frustratingly suffered one too many mistakes that saw the WR450F Rally mounted rider lose one spot in the provisional overall rankings. Determined to continue battling until the end, the Frenchman will give his best during tomorrow’s 288km-long timed special to regain his provisional position in the top three.

Adrien Van Beveren: “Today I pushed really hard but things just didn’t happen like I hoped they would. It was a challenging stage with some trials styled sections and I’m happy we’ve reached its finish in one piece. My pace was good in the morning, but then I started making a few navigational mistakes here and there. Together with the time it takes to get back on the right track, the toughest part is that you lose your race pace. Following the mistakes in the morning I had a bad starting position in the second part of the special so took a lot of risks passing riders. It just wasn’t a good day but nothing is lost and nothing is gained. We still have tomorrow and then last day’s short stage. Our goal is the overall podium and we all know that anything could happen these next two days.”

Following a cautious plan of attack while making good use of his experience, Adrien’s Yamalube Yamaha Official Rally Team partner Hélder Rodrigues enjoyed the most successful stage of his 2017 Dakar Rally campaign so far. Claiming a well-deserved fifth place result from today’s stage, the rider from Portugal climbed five positions in the provisional overall standings, where he’s currently placed 11th. With two stages to go and less than three minutes separating Hélder from the rider provisionally holding 10th overall, the possibility remains of all three Yamaha Racing riders finishing inside the Dakar Rally’s top 10.

Continuing to battle for the top, Xavier de Soultrait made a series of small navigational mistakes that forced the Yamaha France supported rider to settle for 22nd on today’s stage 10. Dropping to eighth in the provisional overall standings, Xavier is determined to push hard for the top six during the last two stages of the event.

Tomorrow’s penultimate racing day at the Dakar Rally features the last over-100km-long timed special of this year’s rally. Taking riders from San Juan to the last bivouac in Río Cuarto it includes a timed special of 288km in a mix of dunes and WRC-styled dirt roads.