Hero MotoSports Registers an Impressive Result at Sonora Rally 2023

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Business Wire India
Hero MotoSports Team Rally, the motorsport team of the world’s largest manufacturer of motorcycles and scooters – Hero MotoCorp, concluded their campaign at the 2023 edition of Sonora Rally, with both riders finishing in the top 10 positions.
 
Ross Branch and Sebastian Buhler who represented Team Hero MotoSports at their first outing in North America, crossed the finish line of the rally securing the 7th and 10th overall positions respectively.
 
Ross Branch, even though new to the Mexican terrain, showcased a consistent performance all through the week, making it to the top-10 in all but one stage of the Rally. In the final stage, he finished with the 8th fastest time. 
 
Sebastian Buhler too made continuous improvements to move up the leaderboard with each stage. Even though the difficult terrain and some time-losses dampened his spirit early on in the race, the German athlete showed great resilience and finished strong,
 
For Hero MotoSports Team Rally, this was a step into the unknown, as they entered their first race in the North American continent. Unlike other teams, Hero riders did not have any prior knowledge of the terrain, the track conditions and the rhythm of the Sonora Rally. However, the confident team learnt quickly, caught up with their competitors, and fought well until the last mile.
 
The Hero MotoSports Team Rally will now focus on training and preparing for the rest of the World Championship. Coming up in August, the Desafio Ruta 40 in Argentina is going to be their next challenge, followed by Rallye Du Maroc in October.
 
Sonora Rally, which debuted in Mexico nine years ago, was inducted into the 2023 FIM World Rally Raid Championship (W2RC). Set in Sonora, the second-largest state of Mexico, and featuring the hottest desert in North America – the Sonora Rally was spread across 5 stages covering over 2,300 km, half of which formed the timed sections. It started in the capital city of Hermosillo a week ago. The 5 stages resembled the Dakar Rally where each day of the race introduced the competitors to varied terrains.
 
Wolfgang Fischer, Team Manager:
“It’s our first time here in Mexico, and we are happy to finish well, without any technical issues or crashes. We suffered a bit with the fact that it is our first, and yet we still managed to learn quickly and tried to catch up with the other teams who were already exposed to this terrain in the past.
 
“It is sad that the race route was changed quite a lot from the initial plan, so we missed a lot of the nice big dunes in the northern part of Mexico. Even though it wasn’t really the complete rally we expected, the organizers still did their best to make it a good race. I look forward to bringing back the team in the best shape to Argentina for the next round, the Ruta 40. Thanks to all our teams, partners and fans for their continued support and motivation.”
 
Ross Branch:
“Happy to be in one piece at the finish of my first Sonora Rally. I really enjoyed the race in this new terrain. Not the overall result I was expecting to achieve, but we will keep on working and keep pushing towards the team goal. I am looking forward to the next race in Argentina in a few months’ time.”
 
Sebastian Buhler:
“Overall, it was a really nice rally, even though it was a completely new terrain for some of us in the Championship. So, I took a little bit of time to get into the rhythm, but I feel I kept improving day by day, and was able to enjoy the race. Now I’ll focus on reaching Argentina in the best shape for Ruta 40.”
 
Final Rankings – Stage 5 (Rally GP Class)
1.           Daniel Sanders                           Red Bull Gas Gas Factory Racing              1h 14m 01s
2.           Tosha Schareina                        Honda Team                                             + 2m 41s
3.           Luciano Benavides                   Husqvarna Factory Racing                 + 2m 53s
8.           Ross Branch                            Hero MotoSports Team Rally   + 6m 09s
10.        Sebastian Buhler                    Hero MotoSports Team Rally   + 8m 18s
 
Overall Rankings after Stage 5 (Rally GP Class):
1.           Daniel Sanders                           Red Bull Gas Gas Factory Racing              11h 01m 09s
2.           Tosha Schareina                        Honda Team                                             + 8m 23s
3.           Luciano Benavides                   Husqvarna Factory Racing                 + 17m 16s
7.           Ross Branch                            Hero MotoSports Team Rally   + 30m 07s
10.        Sebastian Buhler                    Hero MotoSports Team Rally   + 41m 01s

For more information:
www.heromotocorp.com | FB: HeroMotoCorpIndia | Twitter: @HeroMotoCorp | IG: @HeroMotoCorp
 
Follow the team:
www.heromotosports.com | IG: @Heromotosports | FB: HeroMotoSports |Twitter: @hero_motosports