Local biker, Ross Branch had a poor start to the Rally de Maroc after finishing 26th on the first stage held on Saturday.
The five stage rally started on Saturday and ends on Wednesday (October 13 ). Branch has returned to the saddle following a set back at the Silk Way Rally earlier this year.
His bike broke mid-through the round two of the World Championship. After the third, the BP Ultimate Rally was cancelled as the biker sat on the sixth spot with 25 points behind leader, Mathias Walkner. Branch is in Morocco in a highly competitive line up of 27 riders that include the current FIM World Champion Sam Sunderland, Toby Price and Kevin Benavides.
Also in the midst is Branch's Yamaha teammates Adrien Van Beveren and Andrew Short. 2021 Dakar Rally participants Pablo Quintanilla, Ricky Brabec, Nacho Cornejo and Joan Barreda make up the Honda team. A round win will give the Branch a 25 points boast. However the rider had a day to forget on Saturday. Marred by a series of navigation problems, the biker lost track of the leading and had to settle for the 26th place ahead of stage two which was held yesterday. "(I am) so far behind and I think today I will just try to navigate by the tracks as well.
It is a big roadbook today. I will have to put in and try to avoid mistakes today," Branch told FIM Cross-country Rallies media team on Sunday morning. The biker was to go over a distance of 334km yesterday. He had a blistering start to his debut World Championship after securing a round win at the Kazakhstan Rally in March.