Dakar 2016: One more stage win for Sebastien Loeb
Sebastien Loeb was fastest again and he scored his second consecutive stage win at 2016 Dakar Rally. Loeb needed 2 hours, 9 minutes and 39 seconds to travel over 190 km of timed section with #314 Peugeot 2008 DKR. Team Peugeot Total scored 1-2 stage result once more, because second fastest was Carlos Sainz with 1m13s gap. Sainz was just two seconds faster than Qatari Nasser Al-Attiyah (Mini).
Stage 3 between Termas Rio Hondo and Jujuy was shortened, same as Stage 2 the day before, because of bad weather and flooded roads. Instead of 314 km of timed section, competitors had just 190 km, at least most of them, because trucks didn’t even start after their stage was cancelled.
Fastest from start to finish
Sebastien Loeb continued to run in high speed pace, determined to repeat the result from victorious Stage 2. He was the fastest from the start and first control point, while drivers behind him were changing positions. In the first half of the stage Peugeot’s veteran drivers Carlos Sainz and Stephane Peterhansel were close behind their rookie teammate Loeb, but as the end was getting near, they lost the pace.
Sainz remained second, while Peterhansel dropped to sixth. On the other side, last year’s winner Nasser Al-Attiyah sped up and jumped to third place in Stage 3 classification. Giniel De Villiers (Toyota) finished fourth, 2m2s behind Loeb. Another Dakar rookie Mikko Hirvonen (Mini) was quite fast again and finished fifth. Peterhansel, Leeroy Poulter (Toyota), Bernhard Ten Brinke (Toyota), Yazeed Al-Rajhi (Toyota) and Cyril Despres (Peugeot) completed top 10. Vladimir Vasilyev, who was third fastest on Monday, finished eleventh on Tuesday.
Loeb has 5min advantage
After three stages, Loeb’s advantage over second-placed De Villiers is little over 5 minutes. Third-placed Peterhansel is 12 seconds slower than the South African, while Mikko Hirvonen follows with 37s gap behind Peterhansel. Nasser Al-Attiyah completed top 5 with 6m39s gap behind the leader. Positions from 6 to 10 were taken by Poulter, Ten Brinke, Vasilyev, Despres and Sainz, who was 12m20s behind Loeb.
Tomorrow’s Stage 4 (Jujuy-Jujuy) is 629km long, with a 429km-long timed section. The special section takes place at an average of 3,500m altitude, with ceaseless changes in pace resulting from alternating sandy and rocky terrain.
All the results from Dakar Rally you can find at SnapLap result pages.
Here’s Stage 3 summary:
Photos: Red Bull