|Dakar 2010: Robby Gordon win 4th stage - Peterhansel still leader.|
Robby Gordon was surprising today - and made "Double Work" for many Press-Officers. After all told about the second Stage-Victory of Stéphane Peterhansel, the US-American "came from behind" and made the victory perfect. For X-Raid´s Stéphane Peterhansel also a great day. He won a great duel between the BMW and Nasser Al Attiyah plus Carlos Sainz in their Volkswagen. Al Attiyah won the Volkswagen-Race - and Peterhansel strengthen his overall lead. "This was a superb performance by Stéphane after starting first on the road," said a delighted team director Sven Quandt.
Numerous vehicles were still stranded in the dunes at nightfall on Monday and the organisers elected to delay the start of Tuesday’s special stage by 90 minutes and finish the stage at the third passage control, 43km from the originally intended finish. The first 37km to PC1 took place over stony ground, before the stage became more sandy and switched to desert-like terrain from 90km to the revised finishing point at PC3.
Peterhansel took a 4m 33s overall advantage over Spaniard Carlos Sainz into the day. He maintained a 24-second virtual stage lead over Al-Attiyah through the first checkpoint - despite being the first car into the stage - although Chicherit dropped six minutes to the leading duo and was down in 21st position on the day’s special.
Guerlain Chicherit and Tina Thõrner began the day in 11th overall and fifth on the road in a second BMW X3 CC. They were delayed early in the special and eventually set the 11th fastest time to maintain a similar position in the overall standings.
Al-Attiyah moved 35 seconds ahead of BMW’s overnight leader through 83km, but Peterhansel closed the gap to a mere six seconds after 111km, as the pair began to edge away from Sainz.
Russia’s Leonid Novitskiy slipped to 20th in the overall standings at the start of the trek across the Andes and had South Africa’s Alfie Cox to thank for helping him out of a soft sandy grave in intense heat on the run into Fiambalá, after he suffered a drive train issue.
The Russian and his two-time Dakar-winning co-driver Andreas Schulz recorded the 25th fastest time on the stage yesterday and followed that up with the eighth fastest time on stage four to climb back towards the top 15 in the overall standings.
2010/01/05 | 20:32 CET | Editor: MR/HS