Aurélien CANOT, Media365, published on Thursday, January 13, 2022 at 2:30 p.m.
On the eve of the final finish, Carlos Sainz, winner of the 11th stage, won his second success on this Dakar 2022 on Thursday. Second on the stage, Sébastien Loeb thought he had taken a little more than four minutes in Nasser Al- Attiyah, before receiving a penalty of five minutes after the fact and finally giving up more ground. Unless there is an incident, the Qatari will cross the line as the winner on Friday.
Barring an incident, Nasser Al-Attiyah (51) won the race. Already winner of the Dakar in 2011, 2015 and 2019, the Qatari second in the last two editions as in 2016 and 2018 will undoubtedly win his fourth success in the event on Friday. As long as mathematically, the new coronation of Al-Attiyah will not be validated, Sébastien Loeb, second in the general classification, will be able to believe it, or try to be convinced of it more exactly. Nonetheless, the stakes seem to be drawn for a long time. The Alsatian, like the day before, also thought to have taken more time on Thursday from his rival (4’21 « to be exact), even if it was probably for honor only. The nine-time world champion, second of this 11th and penultimate stage, had only been beaten by Carlos Sainz on Thursday. He was thus less than thirty minutes (28’19 « ) from the leader, only seventh in this stage 11 at almost seven minutes from the Spanish. Interesting, certainly, but almost useless at twenty-four hours for Al-Attiyah to put down his wheels as the winner in Jeddah at the end of a final special of … 164 km. Especially since, unfortunately, it did not last long and the former WRC driver must have quickly become disillusioned.
The 41st for the « Matador »
On arrival, the leader of the general classification did not even cede ground to the French for the second day in a row. On the contrary, he even regained some time, Loeb having been penalized afterwards by five minutes by the organizers for speeding in a controlled area. He therefore ended up eighth in this stage, 7’21 « from Sainz and 39 seconds behind Al-Attiyah. Except earthquake, the first victory of the Alsatian, who had the merit of insisting to the end and not being discouraged despite his many misadventures once again, will therefore wait again. Sainz, he now has 41 victories on his record. The second for the « Matador » in this edition behind the wheel of his Audi RS Q e-tron as the German brand’s hybrid prototype makes its race debut.
RALLYE-RAID – W2RC / DAKAR 2022 (AUTOS)
11th stage – Bisha – Bisha (346 km) – Thursday January 13, 2022
1- Carlos Sainz-Lucas Cruz (ESP / Audi) in 3h29’32 «
2- Lucio Alvarez-Armand Monleon (ARG-ESP / Toyota) at 3’10 «
3- Mattias Ekström-Emil Bergkvist (SUE-SUE / Audi) at 3’53 «
4- Nani Roma-Alex Haro Bravo (ESP-ESP / Bahrain Raid Xtreme) at 4’10 «
5- Giniel de Villiers-Dennis Murphy (AFS-AFS / Toyota) at 5’11 «
8- Sébastien Loeb-Fabian Lurquin (FRA-BEL / Bahrain Raid Xtreme) at 7’21 « (penalty of 5’00 »)
General classification (after 11 out of 12 stages)
1- Nasser Al-Attiyah-Matthieu Baumel (QAT-AND / Toyota) in 36h49’51 «
2- Sébastien Loeb-Fabian Lurquin (FRA-BEL / Bahrain Raid Xtreme) at 33’19 «
3- Yazeed Al-Rajhi-Michael Orr (ARS-GBR / Toyota Overdrive) at 1h03’43 «
4- Orlando Terranova-Daniel Oliveras Carreras (ARG-ESP / Bahrain Raid Xtreme) at 1h31’29 «
5- Giniel de Villiers-Dennis Murphy (AFS-AFS / Toyota) at 1h44’11 «