Jan 03, 2021, 06:38 am
The legendary Dakar rally-raid will formally start in Saudi Arabia only tomorrow , January 3, but already on Saturday its participants went to the start of the so-called "prologue" - a high-speed section only 11 km long. It is important that the one who showed the best time today will be the first to go to the distance of the first "real" stage with a length of 345 km on Sunday.
Qatari rider Nasser Al-Attiyah (Toyota H33lux) was the fastest today, 36 seconds ahead of his eternal rival Carlos Sainz, who will defend the Dakar title won last year.
But today the Spaniard was unlucky: just three kilometers after the start, his X-Raid MINI had a punctured wheel, which forced him to slow down, which was used by Al-Attiyah and nearly three dozen other rivals. Sainz finished the prologue only in 28th place, so on Sunday he starts rather late, when clouds of dust from previously passed cars will hang over the track, which will complicate overtaking and increase the risk of an accident.
The best Russian rider today was Vladimir Vasiliev (Mini JSW Rally), he showed 12 times, but at the same time he is the best of all who compete in off-road vehicles with diesel engines.