DAKAR RALLY 2015: QATAR RED BULL RALLY TEAM- ANOTHER STAGE WIN AS AL-ATTIYAH EXTENDS DAKAR RALLY LEAD
DAKAR A FULL 2015
Another stage win as Al-Attiyah extends Dakar Rally lead.
8 January 2015
Nasser Al-Attiyah on SS4 © Marcin Kin
Wednesday, January 7, 2015
As the epic Dakar Rally climbed to a breathtaking 4,800 metres across the Andes, Qatar Rally Team’s Nasser Al-Attiyah delivered an equally breathtaking performance: another stage win, his third of the rally so far, means that Nasser’s lead is back up to more than eight minutes.
Today’s stage, held in the arid Atacama Desert in Chile, introduced competitors to the first of the serious sand dunes they will encounter: huge shifting mountains of sand that can only be conquered with the right amount of experience to read the road precisely.
In these demanding conditions, Nasser and his co-driver Matthieu Baumel excelled, winning the 315-kilometre stage by three minutes and extending their overall lead of the rally. As has been the case since the start of the rally four days ago, the duo encountered no problems at all en route to the stage finish – even though this is the first Dakar that they have tackled together.
“It was good to win the stage and to finish the day without any punctures or any other problems,” said the Qatari. “But it really wasn’t easy. We could push a bit after the dunes, as we didn’t want to take too many risks. The main thing was to take time from Giniel as he is always there: in the top two or three on every stage. He will be the man to beat.”
Tomorrow, the crews head north up the Chilean coast towards the port city of Antofagasta, whose skyscrapers rise up out of the desert like a mirage. Before then Nasser has 458 kilometres of special stage to conquer, which is mainly characterised by soft fesh-fesh sand. This means that there can be a lot of dust, and crews have to exercise caution when overtaking.
Nasser is set to use the advantage he has built up by managing his pace carefully tomorrow, because he explains that the only way for a driver to win the Dakar is by using his head as much as his right foot.
“It doesn’t matter if we lose tomorrow, as now we have a margin,” he said. “The most important thing is that we continue like this: sometimes pushing, sometimes not, but always consistent.”
Stay up-to-date with the Qatar Rally Team at redbull.com/dakar, as they look to pick up some serious speed in motorsport’s ultimate test of endurance racing.
Results of SS4:
1. Nasser Al-Attiyah (QAT)/Matthieu Baumel (F) Qatar Rally Team 3hr 09min 18sec
2. Nani Roma (E)/Michel Perin (F) Mini 3hr 11min 58sec
3. Giniel de Villiers (RSA)/Dirk von Zitzewitz (D) Toyota 3hr 12min 15sec
4. Yazeed Al-Rahji (SAU)/Timo Gottschalk (D) Toyota 3hr 12min 43sec
5. Stéphane Peterhansel (F)/J-P Cottret (F) Peugeot 2008 DKR 3hr 15min 06sec
Overall results after SS4:
1 Nasser Al-Attiyah (QAT)/Matthieu Baumel (F) Qatar Rally Team 12hr 30min 44sec
2 Giniel de Villiers (RSA)/Dirk von Zitzewitz (D) Toyota 12hr 38min 59sec
3 Yazeed Al-Rahji (SAU)/Timo Gottschalk (D) Toyota 12hr 54min 17sec
4 Bernhard Ten Brinke (NL)/Tom Colsoul (B) Toyota 13hr 13min 16sec
5 Krzysztof Holowczyc (PL)/Xavier Panseri (F) Mini 13hr 14min 14sec
Qatar Red Bull Rally Team
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