Peugeot triplet on a spectacular stage. Peterhansel has achieved the stage victory while Loeb retains the leadership. Nasser Al-Attiyah loses nearly all option to fight for the victory of the Rally
Third stage of the Dakar, 364 km of special. Already in Argentina, the drivers were leaving from San Miguel de Tucuman to San Salvador de Jujuy. First stage with the first few doses of height, change of scenary and initial contact with the outside track would the drivers to test with some other river crossing.
Sébastien Loeb opened the track ahead of a little conformist Nasser Al-Attiyah . This morning was 3 minutes behind the Frenchman of Peugeot but in the WP1 already had advance. Stéphane Peterhansel, with problems in this start of the rally, attacking and going in first position in the CP1 with 22 seconds of advantage over the Qatar driver of Toyota, while Yazeed Al Rajhi was flying the Mini going in third position, that shortly after robbed him of his team-mate Mikko Hirvonen.
To the WP4 were to Al-Attiyah lead with little more than a minute advantage over Peterhansel. Loeb seemed to have problems and already lost 4 minutes compared to the driver of Toyota. A little more than 5 minutes of Al-Attiyah ,in the WP4, were to Yazeed To Rajhi, Cyril Despres and Nani Roma almost tied fighting for the top 5.
At the end of the ASS1 Al-Attiyah leads the stage, followed by Peterhansel, Hirvonen and Loeb. On the other hand the companions of Toyota’s driver Nani Roma and Giniel De Villiers lost 7 and 9 minutes respectively.
Back to the special and arrived the first serious setback in the cars category. Nasser Al-Attiyah was stopped in the km 414 due to the loss of a tire from his Toyota. Thus, Peterhansel was in first position followed by Mikko Hirvonen and Carlos Sainz to 3 minutes followed very closely by their colleague Sébastien Loeb. But after a few minutes, the other two Toyota also were stopped (Roma and De Villiers). Finally the three Hilux can start and continue but with many options lost.
Peterhansel along with Sainz and Loeb will give the triplet to Peugeot while the overall is with Sebastien Loeb leader followed by Sainz and Peterhansel. Hirvonen fourth followed by Roma closing the top 5. De Villiers drops to the 11 position while Al-Attiyah has not yet reached the goal at the close of this edition.