It has been a very long war with casualties in each battle, and he will have done well to have saved his strength for the decisive battle. Because until now, it was more about not losing position playing a good strategy than attacking like crazy to try to break the enemy’s shield. Even depleted by his accumulated wounds, Barreda he understood well what had to be done and is prepared to launch the final attack with which he will seek to emerge victorious. He was third in the tenth stage that Price won and climbs to fourth overall.

And it is that the fast day of Wednesday with 375 timed kilometers in a landscape of the most varied, He delimited in such a way that the five contenders for the Dakar motorcycle triumph can be finalized. And the Spanish Honda is among them. Not even the most optimistic would have said it the day he fractured his clavicle, but there he is, fully immersed and hooked to the new leader, Van Beveren, less than seven minutes away. A possible result thanks to an outstanding performance in the penultimate stage to yield three minutes against Price.

It’s more, Barreda even led the times after starting in fifth position, setting the best time at three checkpoints until halfway through the stage he lost five at a time. He recovered a part later, and it was even good for him not to achieve the victory because that is how he will start on Thursday with two references ahead, that of the Australian from KTM and that of Luciano Benavides (second to two minutes). Something that will be key because the eleventh stage was indicated by Castera as the most decisive of the Dakar.

We said that there are five warriors who remain fully in the fight. Apart from the two mentioned, they are Quintanilla, Sunderland and Walkner. The Chilean is second to four minutes, the British lost ten at the end and is third to six, and the Austrian gave up the lead, leaving more than 15 (eight overall). We will see if everything is part of a strategy. The one that worked was Santolino, fifth after changing the Sherco’s engine, but in return he is eleventh at 40 minutes from the leader, with the sixth, Price, at 13. That will be his fight, Barreda’s will be decided at the top.


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