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2016-01-12 19:00

BATTLING THE HEAT: The ninth stage of the Dakar Rally has been cut short due to searing heat .Image: AP

Belen - The ninth stage of the Dakar Rally has been cut short because of searing heat and the many difficulties encountered by competitors between Belen and Fiambala on Tuesday, organisers said.

For the motobikes the stage was halted after 179km of the day's planned 436km run with the riders continuing on in convoy to the finish line, apart from some 30 competitors who had already reached that point.

For cars the race was also shortened to the 179km mark, of the planned 396km, of which 285km were timed. Temperatures ranged from 37o - 40o degrees.

After the arrival of just 10 motorbikes at the finish line, Australian KTM rider Toby Price, the overall race leader, had clocked the fasted time of 3hr 55min 51sec.

But organisers could decide to recalculate the times at the 179km mark where Price also had the best time.

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