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Dakar: Deaths mar Peterhansel win

2014-01-11 06:25

MAJOR MINI EFFORT: Stephane Perterhansel of France and co-driver Jean Paul Cottret (Mini) make the desert sand part like a wave. They won Stage 6 of the 2014 Dakar Rally on Friday (Jan 10). Image: AFP

SALTA, Argentina - Defending champion Stephane Peterhansel drove to victory on Stage 6 of the 2014 Dakar Rally on Friday but the race was overshadowed by the deaths of a motorcyclist, who was a father of five, and two journalists.

Image gallery: 2014 Dakar - Stage 1 - 7

Peterhansel, six times a champion in the motorcycle section and with five titles on four wheels, finished 2min43 ahead of Qatar's 2011 champion Nasser al-Attiyah and 5min20sec in front of Argentina's Orlando Terranova on the 400km timed run from Tucuman to Salta.

Spain's Nani Roma, in another Mini, was sixth on the day and retained the overall lead.


South Africa's Giniel de Villiers (Toyota Hilux) is still with the leaders - he was fourth on the day with a time of 2hr49min,04 - 2min43 behind Peterhansel - and is running fourth overall with a total time of 22hr52min22 which is 40.54sec behind overall leader Nani Roma (Mini).

De Villiers said afterwards: "We had a clean day - no problems. I think the guys at the back will come a little bit quicker because there's a lot of cleaning and the road is very slippery on the top but I'm very happy with the day. I must thank the guys back in the bivouac doing all the hard work.

"We finally managed to get on top of the small issues we've been having and the car ran perfectly today. There's still a long way to go - the first week has been really tough and I'm very happy that we made the rest day.

"It's not over by a long way. We really have to stay concentrated. There are some very long stages in Chile and the dunes by Copiapo are famous for their difficulty.

"We'll take a good rest and make sure we're ready for the second week."

French rider Alain Duclos, on a Sherco, beat overall motorcycling leader Marc Coma by 75sec but celebrations were muted after it was revealed that the 9374km race, which crosses Argentina, Chile and Bolivia, had claimed three more lives.


Belgian motorcyclist Eric Palante, 50, riding for the Honda team, died on Thursday's fifth stage between Chilecito and Tucuman.

"We are very moved by his death, we can't hide our pain," said race director Etienne Lavigne. "Eric was a tough, hard rider and a great guy."

Dakar organisers ASO issued a statement reporting that a support-truck crew discovered Palante's body at 8.30am local time on Friday.

"No alert was received by the organisers. Eric had been replenished with water during the afternoon," the statement said. Palante is the 23rd competitor in 36 editions to die on the Dakar Rally.


Two members of an Argentine news team also died on Thursday when the car they were driving in fell into a ravine, the Super Rally magazine said.

Magazine manager Francisco Delgado told AFP: "The dead are journalism student Agustin Mina, 20, and Daniel Ambrosio, 51, who loved auto racing."

Peterhansel, meanwhile, racked up a record-equalling 63rd stage win on the Dakar.

Peterhansel said after the stage:"Today it was a really nice stage. The first part was like a WRC track but in a very nice landscape. It was close to the National Park and was really beautiful. On the second there was a little bit more vegetation.

"Navigation was really easy and we tried to drive very fast today. We are third, I think and for me this is a bad result. The goal is only victory. We will try to push every day, but we know that when we take a risk we can have a crash or something like that. I think we will take the risk to win back time and to get back to first position."


Duclos's most recent earlier win on the Dakar came in Bamako in Mali, north Africa, eight years earlier.

"Today, it was my type of terrain. We've got over the worst over the last few days and the rest day has arrived at the right time - it couldn't be better timed," he said.

Duclos is third overall after six stages but an hour behind former three-times champion Coma on a KTM.

Joan Barreda, on a Honda, was fourth on Friday but is second in the overall standings, 42min17 behind fellow Spaniard Coma.

Results from Friday's Dakar Rally Stage 6 (465km/400km timed) +between San Miguel de Tucuman and Salta, in Argentina

1 Stephane Peterhansel/Jean Paul Cottret (FRA/FRA/Mini)
2 Nasser Al-Attiyah/Lucas Cruz (QAT/ESP/Mini) +2min43
3 Orlando Terranova/Paulo Fiuza (ARG/POR/Mini) +5min20
4 Giniel De Villiers/Dirk Von Zitzewitz (RSA/GER/Toyota) +6min06
5 Carlos Sainz/Timo Göttschalk (ESP/GER/SMG) +6min31
6 Nani Roma/Michel Périn (ESP/FRA/Mini) +6min36
7 Vladimir Vasilyev/Vitaliy Yevtyekhov (RUS/UKR/Mini) +12min02
8 Krzysztof Holowczyc/Konstantin Zhiltsov (POL/RUS/Mini) +12min34
9 Federico Villagra/Jorge Perez Companc (ARG/ARG/Mini) +12min53
10 Christian Lavieille/Jean-Pierre Garcin (FRA/FRA/Haval) +13min01

Overall (after six stages)
1 Nani Roma/Michel Périn (ESP/FRA/Mini) +22hr11min28
2 Orlando Terranova/Paulo Fiuza (ARG/POR/Mini) +30min30
3 Stéphane Peterhansel/Jean Paul Cottret (FRA/FRA/Mini) +33min23
4 Giniel De Villiers/Dirk Von Zitzewitz (RSA/GER/Toyota) +40min54
5 Nasser Al-Attiyah/Lucas Cruz (QAT/ESP/Mini) +1hr22min35
6 Carlos Sainz/Timo Göttschalk (ESP/GER/SMG) +1hr59min38
7 Marek Dabrowski/Jacek Czachor (POL/POL/Toyota) +1hr59min39
8 Pascal Thomasse/Pascal Larroque (FRA/FRA/Buggy Md Rallye) +2hr21min08
9 Krzysztof Holowczyc/Konstantin Zhiltsov (POL/RUS/Mini) +2hr28min57
10 Adam Malysz/Rafal Marton (POL/POL/Toyota) +2hr43min13

1 Alain Duclos (FRA/Sherco) +4hr21:34
2 Marc Coma (ESP/KTM) +1min15
3 Michael Metge (FRA/Yamaha) +1min49
4 Joan Barreda (ESP/Honda) +2min22
5 Cyril Despres (FRA/Yamaha) +2min55
6 Helder Rodrigues (POR/Honda) +4min21
7 Stefan Svitko (SVK/KTM) +7min46
8 Kuba Przygonski (POL/KTM) +8min12
9 Jordi Viladoms (ESP/KTM) +10min26
10 Jeremias Israel Esquerre (CHI/Speedbrain) +11min13

Overall (after six stages)
1 Marc Coma (ESP/KTM) +23hr08min00
2 Joan Barreda (ESP/Honda) +42min17
3 Alain Duclos (FRA/Sherco) +1hr00min58
4 Jordi Viladoms (ESP/KTM) +1hr08min09
5 Jeremias Israel Esquerre (CHI/Speedbrain) +1hr33min28
6 Olivier Pain (FRA/Yamaha) +1hr43min08
7 Kuba Przygonski (POL/KTM) +1hr49min59
8 Helder Rodrigues (POR/Honda) +2hr01min24
9 David Casteu (FRA/KTM) +2hr12min05
10 Daniel Gouet (CHI/Honda) +2hr17min26

Stage 6 - day's video

US - Stage 6 - Car/Bike - Stage Summary... by Dakar

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