NEW DELHI: CS Santosh is provisionally placed 19th overall after the completion of Stage Four of the Merzouga Rally in Morocco.
Santosh, a two-time Dakar Rally competitor, was the 23rd rider to complete the penultimate stage; 1 hour, 2 minutes and 14 seconds after race leader Kevin Benavides. Santosh’s Hero MotoSports teammate Joaquim Rodrigues came 12th with a delay of 39 minutes and 49 seconds. Rodrigues is placed ninth overall.
“(The day) was extremely tough,” said Santosh. “The organisers had told us it was going to be demanding and it was for sure. They cut things short because of the weather, which was the right decision. This morning I started well, but I made a mistake in the navigation. That cost me a lot of time. Overall, I’m happy to be back at the main bivouac.” Friday’s closing stage of the Merzouga Rally, a Dakar Series race, will involve a special test of 74km.
Provisional Results: Stage 4: 1. Kevin Benavides 2:19:35 hrs, 2. Gerard Farres Guell +6:18 min, 3. Stefan Svitko +6:48; 23. CS Santosh 1:02:14.
Provisional Overall Standings: 1. Kevin Benavides 13:39:30 hrs, 2. Stefan Svitko +3:05 min, 3. Adrien van Beveren +11:36; 19. CS Santosh