Despres Takes Dakar Lead As Sainz Rolls
Peugeot had a day to forget on day four of the 2017 Dakar Rally on Thursday. Sebastien Loeb who was the leader of the rally heading into the fourth stage lost 20 minutes on the stage, however he is still in contention to win the rally as he ended the day in fifth place overall and speaking after the stage he commented by saying:
It was OK, but we had trouble with the engine which stopped during the stage. We lost about thirty minutes, I think. Then we found a solution to fix it and we could push again, so I pushed really hard. We’re still in the fight for the win, that’s good news.
Loeb’s misfortune meant that his Peugeot team mate Carlos Sainz was set to take the lead of the rally only to roll his car and got stuck in ravine ending his Dakar rally. The Spaniard’s rally is now effectively over. Sainz has now dropped down to 32nd place overall.
Cyril Depres took victory on stage four for Peugeot and as a result has moved into first place overall with a time of 04:22:55s and speaking following the action he commented by saying:
It’s pretty amazing to win a stage after only three Dakar’s in a car. We started in some small dunes at high altitude and the car had maybe 20, 30 or 40 percent less power. After the beginning we were leading, then Carlos (Sainz) overtook us after 6 km and we followed him for the whole day. But unfortunately on a twisty track he made a mistake and he rolled the car.
Stephane Peterhansel who took victory on Wednesday endured a tough day after going down the wrong route on the trail, losing 22 minutes, as a result the Spaniard has slipped to fourth overall.
Speaking following the say of action, Peterhansel commented by saying:
For us it was a really bad day. On the last note for the navigation, we got completely lost. I went into a big hole in a river and got stuck for twenty minutes. I damaged the steering a little bit and we broke a wheel. So, it’s not really a good day, but compared to Carlos, maybe it’s a little bit better.
Mini’s Nasser Al-Attiyah retired from the rally while his team mate Mikko Hirvonen has moved up to second place overall, while Toyota’s Nani Roma has moved up to third place overall.