Just got a check-in call from Quinn Cody fresh off his fourth stage on the Dakar Rally. This was the first time since leaving the start of the rally in Buenos Ares, Argentina since he’s had a free moment. The rookie rally rider is taking it all in and trying to learn the game of the world’s longest and toughest off-road race. On his JCR backed Honda CRF 450 he finished in 13th position today just behind fellow American Jonah Street and overall Cody is pretty happy with how everything is going.
“It has been crazy, getting up at 3:30 every morning and off riding by 4:30. The days are long and there has been a lot of pavement to get to the racing sections. Argentina was hot and humid with really fast and slippery roads. The top guys are just pinning it! I’m riding along and seeing all the spots where guys are sliding off the road and bouncing off of stuff, just seeing their tracks is scary!”
Today the rally crossed over into Chile and left the golf course-like greenery of Argentina behind for the deserts to come.
“All day long today I was pinned in fourth gear, my bike was having a really hard time with the altitude. And those KTMs fast! A couple of the guys on the new 450s blew right by me. We were up at 14,000 ft. and there just isn’t any air. I’m learning stuff every day.” As this is the first navigation-style race for Cody he is pretty much using it as a learning experience for the future. “The only reason I have time to call is that my team’s truck hasn’t arrived yet, but then it is time to work on the bike again, get it ready for tomorrow…and do my map book too. Man there is a lot of stuff to do on these races!”
Overall in the standings, Marc Coma squeezed out a mere two-second advantage on Cyril Despres to take the lead in the overall standings for the first time in the race. These two riders are clearly pushing the pace to see who cracks first and have distanced themselves from the rest of the competitors with Lopez Contardo, from Chile on an Aprilia sitting in third some 20-minutes behind.We’ll keep you updated with any cool inside info we can get and for the up-to-the-minute news you can follow the race live on www.dakar.com. There is also nightly race coverage on Versus, check your local listings.