Motorsport / Dakar Rally / Sainz regains control on stage 10 as Dakar Rally battle heats up

Courtesy of Red Bull Media Service Team

Al-Attiyah and Peterhansel lose over 10 minutes to the Spanish car legend.

Two-time winner Carlos Sainz regained control of the 2020 Dakar Rally car category from his long-time rivals Nasser Al-Attiyah and Stéphane Peterhansel after they lost over 10 minutes each to the Spaniard during Wednesday’s stage 10. Here is all you need to know:

– Today’s stage saw a deterioration in weather conditions with the race directors deciding to halt proceedings after 345km between Haradh and Shubaytah due to strong winds.

– After Tuesday’s stage nine, Qatari driver Al-Attiyah had reduced Sainz’s overall lead to just 24 seconds while Frenchman Peterhansel stood a competitive six minutes and 38 seconds behind the Spaniard.

– With the leading trio boasting an astonishing 12 Dakar Rally car titles between them, Sainz got the upper hand again on Wednesday as he dug deep in Saudi Arabia to dominate the stage for another victory.

– The 1990 and 1992 WRC champion finished 3m 05s ahead of Polish driver Kuba Przygonski with 2009 Dakar champion Giniel de Villiers third 4m 26s behind.

– Peterhansel could only come in 10th and Al-Attiyah 17th as Sainz opened up an 18m 10s lead over Toyota driver Al-Attiyah and 18m 26s lead over his MINI Buggy team-mate Peterhansel in a crunch stage boost.

– Thursday’s 744km stage 11 looks likely to be the last big chance to cut the overall deficit to Sainz with Friday’s final stage only 447km into the Qiddiya finish.

– Al-Attiyah, 49, admitted: “At one point we got a little bit lost – that was just for two or three minutes. After getting that waypoint we took the wrong way, which took us 20km extra to drive. This is how it goes.”

– American Ricky Brabec finished second in the bike category to increase his advantage to 25m 44s over Chilean Pablo Quintanilla with defending champion Toby Price still in fourth place, Austrian Matthias Walkner sixth and Argentine Luciano Benavides seventh overall.

– Australian Price, 32, revealed: “There were a lot of accidents this morning and there weren’t enough helicopters around to help us out. It’s all for a good reason, but it didn’t help me get back the time I need.”

– American Mitch Guthrie Jr. won the third SxS stage of his debut Dakar race with fellow Red Bull Off-Road Junior Program member Blade Hildebrand right behind.

– Compatriot Casey Currie still holds a lead of 46m 40s over Russian Sergei Kariakin with defending champion Chaleco Lopez 1hr 14m 58s back as he eyes a podium.

Andrey Karginov‘s run of four stage wins finally came to an end in the truck category, however Team Kamaz Master team-mate Anton Shibalov could only take 2m 27s out of his big overall lead.

– Russian Shibalov, who lies 36m 08s behind Karginov, explained: “It was an interesting stage with some dangerous parts where the dunes dropped sharply.”

– Chile’s Ignacio Cásale had a very bad day to finish 44m 59s behind the quad stage winner, nevertheless he still leads Frenchman Simon Vitse by 16m 18s overall.

– The competitors are on their own tonight, denied the assistance of their mechanics, before racing 379km back to Haradh tomorrow during stage 11.

Top three overall results in each category

1. Carlos Sainz (ESP)/Lucas Cruz (ESP) MINI Buggy 37h15m37s
2. Nasser Al-Attiyah (QAT)/Mathieu Baumel (FRA) Toyota +18m10s
3. Stéphane Peterhansel (FRA)/Paulo Fiuza (PRT) MINI Buggy +18m26s

1. Ricky Brabec (USA) Honda 34h12m18s
2. Pablo Quintanilla (CHI) Husqvarna +25m44s
3. Joan Barreda (ESP) Honda +27m09s

1. Andrey Karginov (RUS) Kamaz 40h20m04s
2. Anton Shibalov (RUS) Kamaz +36m08s
3. Siarhei Viazovich (BLR) Maz +01h40m00s

1. Casey Currie (USA)/Sean Berriman (USA) Can-Am 46h22m15s
2. Sergei Kariakin (RUS)/Anton Vlasiuk (RUS) Can-Am +46m40s
3. Chaleco Lopez (CHI)/Juan Pablo Latrach Vinagre (CHI) Can-Am +01h14m58s

1. Ignacio Casale (CHI) Yamaha 44h41m33s
2. Simon Vitse (FRA) Yamaha +16m18s
3. Rafal Sonik (POL) Yamaha +01h06m16s

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