Dakar 2012 – Stage 9

Stage 9

Antofagasta > Iquique

Route

January 10th: The total stage mileage today is 556km but that includes a lengthy untimed neutral section as the stage is split into two parts. Again this day contains dirt, fesh fesh and rocky tracks. The second section features one of the highlights of the whole rally: a 3km, 32% incline descent – on sand – into the Pacific town of Iquique; Bolivia is not far away, and you may have seen this same descent on the ‘Top Gear Bolivian Special’!

Magazine (2min):

A look at the organisational side of the rally. What happens if something goes wrong?

Stage 9 Summary:

A mixed day for the Hummers.

Standings

Today – Bikes

1. Rodrigues (Yamaha)
2. Despres (KTM) +3m16s
3. Svitko (KTM) +4m35s
4. Viladoms (KTM) +5m58s
5. Verhoeven (Sherco) +7m02s

Coma, Despres and several others took the option of a 15-minute time penalty for an engine change. David Casteu broke down with engine failure and lost several hours, entering this stage lying 4th overall he’s now out of contention.

Overall – Bikes

1. Despres (KTM)
2. Coma (KTM) +2m28s
3. Rodrigues (Yamaha) +44m19s
4. Viladoms (KTM) +1h13m432s
5. Farres Guell (KTM) +1h18m05s

Today – Cars

Nasser al-Attiyah is out with alternator belt problems, having stopped three times to fix it he gave up and went home. Robby Gordon was not pleased! Expected him to wait for assistance then continue. Nasser says he’ll be back next year.. but not in a Hummer. Gordon must’ve channelled his anger well, he was fastest.

1. Gordon (Hummer)
2. Peterhansel (MINI) +1m38s
3. Roma (MINI) +8m37s
4. Holowczyc (MINI) +10m39s
5. Leal Dos Santos (MINI) +15m23s

A horde of MINIs, but de Villiers wasn’t far behind them and neither was Carlos Sousa in the Great Wall – a Chinese manufacturer entering the Dakar for the first time I think.

Overall – Cars

1. Peterhansel (MINI)
2. Gordon (Hummer) +5m58s
3. Holowczyc (MINI) +16m49s
4. Roma (MINI) +19m26s
5. De Villiers (Toyota) +54m10s

Quads: 2nd overall entering today, Tomas Maffei lost 44 minutes today which means the Patronelli brothers sit first and second.

Trucks: Sad news as Ales Loprais exited the rally today after his truck rolled on to its roof. Both he and his co-drivers are okay apart from bruises, but as one of the top challengers to de Rooy it is a shame to see him go.

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