January 14th: The penultimate stage and the last day with any real competitive mileage. With only a celebratory 29km tomorrow the rally effectively finishes with today’s stage. The 245km special stage opens with dunes almost immediately, with more of them to follow later on.
I think they’ve uploaded this out of sequence, this is a profile of yesterday’s stage 12.
Perhaps with good reason this stage was profiled, it turned out a lot people had got stuck in the dunes. Nani Roma lost some time but it was nothing compared to some. Check this video at the 22m17s mark (spoiler warning – the video pops up early for me, at the point it shows the stage 13 leaderboard, if you’ve not watched the s13 video yet either skip ahead or wait until later). Unbelievable to see many stuck in one place, everyone likes a challenge but perhaps this was a little too far!
Stage 13 Summary:
A final stage of pushing hard… with some mistakes.
Today – Bikes
Coma was doing well early on and was leading, before making a major navigational error ending up 2km off course. Sadly he was also struck with a gearbox problem. He lost 13 minutes on the stage, and another 45 minutes with a penalty for a second engine change.
1. Rodrigues (Yamaha)
2. Despres (KTM) +47s
3. Viladoms (KTM) +3m00s
4. Barreda Bort (Husqvarna) +5m13s
5. Goncalves (Husqvarna) +5m46s
Overall – Bikes
1. Despres (KTM)
2. Coma (KTM) +56m03s
3. Rodrigues (Yamaha) +1h11m27s
4. Viladoms (KTM) +1h41m12s
5. Svitko (KTM) +1h49m36s
So a disappointing end to the bike rally especially as I’m a bit of a fan of Coma, he has a great attitude, but what a great fight to remember with a deserving winner, all the way from the start until today!
Today – Cars
Following his run-ins with the officials and his rivals protesting his vehicle, Gordon set out to dominate the MINIs today and for a while he succeeded – until his car rolled on to its side. It took half an hour to right it, which has basically cost him 4th overall.
1. Peterhansel (MINI)
2. De Villiers (Toyota) +8m29s
3. Novitsky (MINI) +12m55s
4. Sousa (Great Wall) +13m39s
5. Alvarez (Toyota) +14m57s
Great Wall get a top five! Roma lost 23 minutes after a stop. Gordon came in 10th, 36 minutes down.
Overall – Cars
1. Peterhansel (MINI)
2. Roma (MINI) +42m57s
3. De Villiers (Toyota) +1h15m09s
4. Novitsky (MINI) 2h12m56s
5. Gordon (Hummer) +2h20m05s
Novitsky takes Gordon for 4th.
These tables should represent the final classifications, give or take a minute or two.