Red Bull Off-Road Junior Team get their teeth back into the action on opening day of Andalucía Rally
October 7, 2020
Mitch Guthrie Jr. has been desperate to get back behind the wheel of his OT3 since making his Dakar Rally debut in January. The American now has the chance to race rally-raid again in Andalucía and he wasted no time to take full advantage of the opportunity.
A rapid ride along the 168-kilometre first stage in Spain delivered Mitch 5th place in the side-by-side (SxS) category. Mitch and his co-driver Ola Floene completed the course in 2h24m20s to finish within six minutes of SxS stage winner Aron Domzala.
“It was an awesome day and it’s great to be back at it. The OT3 was on point.” – Mitch Guthrie Jr.
Kevin Hansen is standing-in for injured Red Bull Off-Road Junior Team driver Blade Hildebrand in Spain and making sure his OT3 side-by-side machine gets valuable mileage before the next Dakar. Kevin and co-driver Francois Cazalet were clearing enjoying themselves out on the stage as they came home just two minutes behind team-mates Mitch and Ola.
“This was a great stage, really great. Our speed was good and Francois did a great job with the navigation.” – Kevin Hansen
With three stages still to be raced in Spain, the top nine SxS competitors are separated by a mere 10 minutes. With such intense competition between manufacturers and machines running in the category we’re braced for plenty more exciting racing from the frontrunners.
It’s was an eventful first day of rally-raid racing for 18-year-old Seth Quintero. A brake problem during the nine-kilometre prologue stage was exacerbated when Seth’s OT3 clipped a wall. Following the prologue there was a limited period of one-hour for the car to be serviced ahead of the opening stage, during which time the brake issue was fixed.
However, in the opening kilometres of the first special stage Seth lost the use of his gearbox. The teenager and his co-driver Dennis Zenz found and repaired the issue, but for safety reasons the rally organisation asked them to come back to the bivouac. Seth will resuming racing tomorrow, with his OT3 given a service by the team tonight.
“We’re back in the bivouac getting the car prepped for tomorrow. We’ll see if we can pick up a stage win.” – Seth Quintero
On the menu for tomorrow at the Andalucía Rally is a mammoth 270-kilometre special stage featuring yet more rough terrain and navigational challenges.
Catch up with the Red Bull Off-Road Junior Team in the Destination: Dirt series on Red Bull TV, watch it here
Mitch Guthrie Jr.: “It was an awesome day and it’s great to be back at it. I kept it clean which I was really happy about. The OT3 was on point, it was a great day. We ran a fast pace throughout but didn’t get any flats. Thanks to BF Goodrich. There was a lot of dust so we had to play it safe at times and do the best we could.”
Kevin Hansen: “This was a great stage, really great. At the beginning we were overtaking a few T2s. Our speed was good and Francois did a great job with the navigation. The first 100 kilometres could not have gone any better. After that things got a little bit tricky, we had some bodywork blocking our view and also dust. We lost some positions because of this but overall I’m happy with the first stage.”
Seth Quintero: “Stage one didn’t really go our way. We had a little bit of a mechanical off the line. Me and my co-pilot got out and we got it fixed. Unfortunately we were a little too late to finish off the stage. We’re back in the bivouac getting the car prepped for tomorrow. We’ll see if we can pick up a stage win.”
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