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Saturday, March 2, 2024

Loeb wins 48-hour check, catastrophe for Al-Attiyah

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Because the 549km check round Shubaytah resumed on Friday, Loeb sat third within the order behind Audi duo Carlos Sainz Sr and Mattias Ekstrom, with 5m19s to make up and solely a 3rd of the space remaining.

However the nine-time World Rally Championship was capable of overhaul each Audis in little time, leaping Ekstrom on the first checkpoint of the day earlier than surging forward of Sainz at Bivouac F.

The Frenchman steadily prolonged his benefit over the rest of the stage, claiming a 2m01s victory over Sainz, who held on to the lead within the general standings.

It was Loeb’s second stage victory of 2024 and the twenty fifth of his profession, making him the sixth-most embellished driver within the historical past of the ASO-run rally-raid, tied with former Mitsubishi driver Hiroshi Masuoka. 

Ekstrom misplaced contact with Loeb and Sainz because the stage progressed, conceding 10 minutes within the run to the end line, however nonetheless completed effectively away from Lucas Moraes in the perfect of the Toyotas.

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Eryk Goczal put in a stable effort in his Taurax Max T3 class entry to spherical off the stage in fifth, an extra three minutes again on Moraes.

Photograph by: A.S.O.

#200 Nasser Racing Prodrive Hunter: Nasser Al-Attiyah, Mathieu Baumel

Reigning champion Al-Attiyah had jumped Gonczal for fifth by Bivouac F however his Prodrive Hunter crawled to a halt 530km into the stage with mechanical issues. 

The Qatari driver was finally capable of get to the end line however the restore work value him the perfect a part of three hours, successfully ending his probabilities of a 3rd straight Dakar title in succession – and sixth general. He had been sitting third within the mixed rankings on Thursday, 21m41s off the lead.

Al-Attiyah’s troubles have given Audi a transparent benefit within the general standings, with Sainz heading into the remainder day in Riyadh 20m21s away from team-mate Ekstrom.

Loeb is now the closest challenger to the Audi duo in third, however 29m31s off the lead with six levels to run within the second week of the marathon.

Overdrive’s Guillaume de Mevius heads the Toyota contingent in fourth forward of manufacturing facility duo Lucas Moraes and Giniel de Villiers, with all three having already dropped an hour on Sainz.

MP Sports activities Ford driver Martin Prokop, Century’s Mathieu Serradori, Toyota newcomer Man Botterill and Goczal spherical off the highest 10.

Al-Attiyah is provisionally labeled seventeenth however might drop additional down the pack as extra drivers attain the end.

Dakar resumes on Sunday following the now-traditional mid-rally halt, with drivers set to face a 483km stage between Riyadh and Al-Duwadimi on the restart.

Provisional classification after Stage 6 (High 10):




Time / hole


Carlos Sainz




Mattias Ekstrom




Sebastien Loeb




Guillaume de Mevius




Lucas Moraes




Giniel de Villiers




Martin Prokop




Mathieu Serradori




Man Botterill




Eryk Goczal



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