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This is the single-news section of the marathonrally.com news "Offroad & Motorsports". To see all news please use the link under the article or navigate with the left main-navigation.









Dakar 2009: Cyril Despres on the climb after Stage 8




This 8th very quick stage of the Dakar resembled a last warm-up before tackling the big dunes Chile has to offer. Cyril Despres was the quickest on the way to La Serena and continues to climb up the general standings. The Frenchman has climbed onto a place on the provisional podium, but is still one and a half hours behind leader Marc Coma.

Following a well deserved rest day on the shores of the Pacific, the bikers resumed battle in a fairly gentle manner before the three stages in the Atacama Desert, the genuine high-point of the Dakar in 2009. Today’s program included 294 kilometers on quick and winding tracks.

Chilean Francisco Lopez, who kicked off proceedings for this first special stage in his native land, knew that it would be difficult to grab another victory. The KTM Vectra rider was first caught up with by Marc Coma then by Cyril Despres, who took advantage to post the best time at CP 1 (after 180 km). The three riders then rode on together toward the finishing line in La Serena, again on the coast, opening up a considerable gap on their nearest pursuers. It was naturally Despres who picked up his second special stage victory on this Dakar after his success on the stage to Mendoza. The Frenchman beat Marc Coma by 1.49, a paltry advance in terms of the big picture but he still clawed back time nonetheless, and Lopez by 2.56

This 18th stage victory for Despres on the Dakar takes him up to third place in the general standings, taking advantage of a substandard performance from Jonah Street, who finished 34 minutes behind the winner, and a display slightly less below par from Pal Anders Ullevalseter. The title holder is still 1 hour 33 minutes behind Coma, however. Apart from the several minutes lost to Despres, the Catalan had another excellent day, improving his lead over his nearest rival, David Frétigné, who finished 4th today and struggled somewhat on his 450cc, leaving him 1hour and 6 minutes behind the Spaniard.

2009/01/11 | 17:13 CET | Editor: MR/HS/ASO






















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