It is always good to win but this was not the best stage win for Ricky Brabec (USA) because he did not make much time and he will have to open the road tomorrow. He barely cut two minutes to Ignacio Cornejo (CHL), who leads now.
Ross Branch (BWA) aspired to put Botswana’s flag in the Dakar podium but a fall in the kilometer 35 broke his hope and made him break down. He fell to 15th overall.
Toby Price (AUS) can be happy with second overall because he will not be opening route tomorrow as is just one second adrift of Cornejo. He could win the stage and take the overall lead tomorrow. Then come Sunderland (ENG), de Soultrait (FRA) and Kevin Benavides (ARG).
Skyler Howes (USA) was 3rd in the stage and is 7th overall.
A local win! After the disappointment of suffering a mechanical problem when he was fighting for the podium a few days ago, at least today Yazeed Al Rahji (SAU) won his first stage since 2015.
He was followed by the first three overall: Peterhansel (FRA), Sainz (ESP) and Al Attiyah (QAT), although the Qatari is ahead of the Spaniard overall, albeit eight minutes off Peterhansel, who has not won a stage yet.
Jakub Przygonski (POL) and Nani Roma (ESP) complete the overall top 5.
After Siarhei Viazovich’s (BLR) sad abandon two days ago, his teammate Aliaksei Vishneuski (BLR) was the “best of the rest” in the MAZ. But the day was a 1-2-3 for Kamaz, with a fourth stage win for Dmitry Sotnikov (RUS), overall leader.
He was followed by Mardeev (RUS) and Shibalov (RUS), third and second overall, respectively. Sotnikov leads by 45 minutos.
What a disappointment for Nicolás Cavigliasso (ARG)! The 2019 winner and the leader until this morning had to abandon with a broken clutch. He officially has a 64-hour penalty but it is unclear if he will go on tomorrow and aspire to take more stage wins.
Another Argentinian, Manuel Andújar, won the stage and inherited the first overall, a bit over 20 minutes ahead of Alexandre Giroud (FRA), third today. Second was Italo Pedemonte (CHL), who is 4th.
“Chaleco” López (CHL) is another one that could be leading were it not for mechanical problems but not having problems is not how Dakar works. He won again today and is now 4th overall, 25 minutes behind Aron Domżała (POL), leader.
Local Saleh Alsaif (SAU) closed the good day for the Saudis, with a second place just ahead of Brazilians Reinaldo Varela/Maykel Justo..
Seth Quintero (USA) is second, 8 minutes behind Domżała. Seconds behind is Austin Jones (USA).
All of the competitors are still running, which is great news considering their cars are all classic.
What is not surprising is that Marc Douton and Emilien Etienne (FRA) won yet another stage, as they have just not won one. Today they were followed by Kilian Revuelta (ESP) and Óscar Sánchez (ESP), in a Toyota. Then came the Czech pair of Ondrej Klymcij y Petr Vlcek.