So much for asking Peterhansel to slow down…
Official Release: Stéphane Peterhansel (FR) in his black MINI ALL4 Racing has won the 13th and penultimate stage of the 2014 Dakar Rally. The Monster Energy X-raid Team driver finished the day 3:38 minutes ahead of Nasser Al-Attiyah (QT) in the predominantly white MINI ALL4 Racing, Joan “Nani” Roma (ES) in the yellow MINI ALL4 Racing, which is based on the MINI John Cooper Works Countryman, was in 3rd place.
Today’s 350k-long stage led from El Salvador in the mountains to La Serena at the Pacific coast. The first part of the stage was held on gravel roads, later the drivers entered the dunes of the famous Atacama desert again, which they already knew from previous stages.
“A good day for me and my co-driver,” Peterhansel said after the stage. “The conditions were tough again, the Atacama is never easy to drive, there are so many traps you can step into. The sand is extremely fine and you can get stuck with your car quickly. But as always our MINI ALL4 Racing showed a great performance. It was quick and also really reliable.”
Stéphane Peterhansel is now also leading the overall classification. With one stage to go on Saturday, the Frenchman is leading teammate “Nani” Roma by a small margin of only 26 seconds. Tomorrow’s stage will lead from La Serena to the finish line in Valparaíso, where the 2014 Dakar Rally will finish after13 days and 9,374 kilometres.