Stage 5 of the 2013 Dakar Rally started in Arequipa Peru and made it’s way across the border to Arica Chile. The cars and bikes had different routes in todays stage allowing the bikes to travel on narrower tracks. The bikes started their special at the beginning of the day and the cars at the end with both navigating through drastic changes as they crossed the border into Chile. Competitors travelled through endless dunes to rocks and riverbeds from valley to valley.
Nani Roma took the Stage 5 win and Stéphane Peterhansel still leads overall in the car category after a second place finish in todays stage. The cars had a 284 km (176 miles) liason section and ended with the 172 km special (106 miles). Peterhansel – ” I have to say, Al-Attiyah made our day allot easier. We just had to follow the nice tracks he left and it allowed us to lose less time in navigation.”
Nasser Al-Attiyah had navigational issues in todays stage putting him over 9 minutes behind the overall leader. Regardless, Nasser continues to show how the new Jeffries built buggies can withstand the punishment of the Dakar.
Carlos Sainz took it easy today so he could help Nasser if necessary. It’s apparent that with over 3 hours between himself and the rally leader it will be up to Nasser to try and put the new Jeffries built Qatar buggies on the podium. Sainz – “Now I am here to help Nasser.”
Robby Gordon started the stage in 27th position and finished with a very strong 3rd place for the day. Robby – “We’ll keep fighting and see how we end up.” I expect we will see Robby charging hard from here on out to bring home stage wins and to put on a great show for his fans. Gordon currently sits in 36th position, almost 6 hours behind the overall leader.
In todays stage the bikes had a different route than the cars, starting with a 274km special and a 136km connection. Casteu left third off the line today but quickly took over the lead by WP1 and held it all the way to the finish 00:01:09 ahead of Pain.
The French are dominating the bike class sitting comfortably in the top three. Pain leads with Casteu in second place, 00:01:15 back and Despres in third 00:06:07 behind the leader.
Interview with Casteu:
For the Americans Kurt Caselli finished 20th in this stage which puts him in 19th overall. Caselli is now 00:31:54 behind the overall leader.
Stay tuned tomorrow for Stage 6 coverage of the 2013 Dakar Rally.
Complete Results for Stage 5 can be found on the ASO website.