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Too dangerous - stage called off

2012-01-06 07:46

TAkING ON THE ANDES: Due to the bad weather over the Andes Cordillera (rain and snow), Chilean authorities were forced to close the border at Paso de San Francisco, situated at 4700m.

Fiambala, Argentina - Officials have called off the sixth leg of the 2012 Dakar Rally due to dangerous, snowy weather in the Andes, where drivers have to to cross from Argentina to the Chilean city of Copiapo on January 6.

For the seventh time, the Dakar Rally will cross over the Andes, though unfavourable conditions (rain and snow) has resulted in officials calling off the leg fearing for the safety of competitors and support crew.

Officials said vehicles will cross the 4700m high mountain pass in a convoy, but there will be no competitive leg.

It was not immediately clear if the sixth leg would be run later in the event, or if the rally would simply move to the seventh leg on January 7.

The itinerary has been changed after the border crossing and now sees racers heading to Diego de Almagro.

Stephane Peterhansel of France leads the overall car category while Cyril Despres leads the motorcycles.

Inside Wheels24

Look out! Race car crashes into camera stand, sends crew plummeting

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