Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Sonik Retakes Quad Class Lead

Stage nine of the 2015 Dakar Rally saw the quad class lead change again. After Pole Rafał Sonik lost the lead on stage eight, he retook the point after finishing second on stage nine.

Chilean Victor Gallegos Lozic won today's stage, 15 minutes and 35 seconds ahead of Sonik with Uruguayan Sergio Lafuente finishing third, 25 minutes and 29 seconds back of Gallegos Lozic. Ignacio Casale entered as the quad class lead but dropped to second overall after finishing 26 minutes and 24 seconds back in fourth on the stage. Argentine Jeremias Gonzalez Ferioli finished fifth, 30 minutes and 21 seconds back.

Sonik leads Casale by four minutes with Lafuente trailing by 52 minutes and 16 seconds back in third position. Gonzalez Ferioli is two hours and 53 minutes back in fourth position. Bolivian Walter Nosiglia rounds out the top five over three hours and 45 minutes back.

Nani Roma won his first stage of the 2015 Dakar Rally. The defending winner in the car class held off current car class leader Nasser Al-Attiyah by six minutes and 27 seconds. Vladimir Vasilyev made it a Mini sweep of the podium with the Russian finishing 15 minutes and 52 seconds off Roma. Toyota's Giniel de Villiers finished 21 minutes and 58 seconds back in fourth with his teammate Yazeed Al-Rahji rounding out the top five, 27 minutes and 16 seconds back.

Mini drivers Krzysztof Holowczyc and Orlando Terranova finished sixth and seventh, with the Pole 29 and a half minutes back of Roma and the Argentine a minute and four seconds behind Holowczyc. Robby Gordon finished eighth, 35 minutes and 59 seconds back. Frenchmen Cyril Despres and Pierre Lachaume rounded out the top ten on stage nine with 13 seconds separating the two. Despres finished 45 minutes and 22 seconds back of Roma.

Stéphane Peterhansel finished over three hours and 21 seconds back of Roma on stage nine.

Al-Attiyah leads de Villiers by 23 minutes and 58 seconds. Al-Rahji is 39 minutes and 29 seconds back in third with Holowczyc in fourth, an hour and 16 minutes back. Erik Van Loon rounds out the top five, two hours and 41 minutes back after finishing 20th on the stage.

Peterhansel fell to 14th overall, five hours and six minutes back. Terranova is 19th, seven hours and six minutes back with Gordon rounding out the top twenty, seven hours and 22 minutes back.

Hélder Rodrigues won his second stage of the 2015 Dakar Rally by three minutes and 51 seconds over fellow Honda rider and Portuguese Paulo Gonçalves. Marc Coma finished third but holds on to his class lead after finishing seven minutes and 34 seconds off Rodrigues. Argentine Javier Pizzolito finished fourth, 20 minutes and seven seconds back. Stefan Svitko rounded out the top five, 21 minutes and 40 seconds back.

KTM riders riders Toby Price and Pablo Quintanilla finished sixth and seventh with the Australian 23 minutes and nine seconds back. The Chilean finished six seconds behind Price. Olivier Pain finished 28 minutes and nine seconds back in eighth. David Casteu finished three seconds back of Pain in ninth. Joan Barreda rounded out the top ten on stage nine after falling out of the top ten from the lead on stage eighth. Barreda finished 34 minutes and 47 seconds off Rodrigues.

Coma has a five-minute and 28-second advantage over Gonçalves. Quintanilla is third, trailing Coma by 26 minutes and 52 seconds. Price is 31 minutes and 31 seconds back in fourth. Svitko is fifth, 40 minutes and 36 seconds back.

Rodrigues is 12th, three hours and 18 minutes back after his stage victory. Barreda is 17th, four hours and 38 minutes back.

Airat Mardeev won his second stage of the 2015 Dakar Rally and extended his overall truck class lead. Mardeev won by a minute and 29 seconds over Eduard Nikolaev. Gérard de Rooy rounded out the podium, seven minutes and five seconds back. Andrey Karginov finished fourth, 15 minutes and 33 seconds back with Aleš Loprais finishing fifth, 18 minutes and 58 seconds off Mardeev.

Mardeev leads by 14 minutes and ten seconds over Nikolaev entering the final four stages. Karginov trails by 20 minutes and 42 seconds in 3rd. Loprais is an hour and 18 minutes back in fourth. Dmitry Sotnikov rounds out the top five, an hour and 51 minutes back after finishing eighth on stage nine.

The Dakar Rally will head back to Argentina for the final four stages as the teams head from Calama, Chile to Salta, Argentina for stage ten.