Published on January 16th, 2016 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez0
4 MINIs in the top 10 for Dakar
Celebratory congratulations are directed towards Mikko Hirvonen (FIN) with the advent of his first ever Dakar Rally Special Stage win. The AXION X-raid Team (#315) driver and co-driver Michel Périn (FRA) finished Stage 12 in the number one slot after a Special Stage consisting of 481k of hard packed, pebble and rock littered terrain. After a near-faultless display of consistent driving in his first ever Dakar Rally – a completely new racing arena and experience for the former WRC driver – this is a much deserved win for Hirvonen. He now sits fourth overall but still has ambition to complete this Dakar inside the top three.
Al-Attiyah (QAT) and co-pilot Mathieu Baumel (FRA) continued their fight for the Dakar top slot by finishing Stage 12 in second place. The close run stage proved to be an exciting spectacle for crews and spectators alike and ended with Nasser pushing hard in his MINI ALL4 Racing (#300) to complete the stage only nine seconds behind fellow AXION X-raid Team driver Hirvonen. Spain’s Joan ‘Nani’ Roma and Alex Haro (AXION X-raid Team #304) secured a top five position in their MINI ALL4 Racing. At stage end they took a hard fought fifth because of the lack of room to overtake and the problems with dust kicked up by competitors.
Orlando Terranova (ARG) and co-driver Bernardo ‘Ronnie’ Graue (ARG) from AXION X-raid Team (#310) once again displayed their renowned high-speed determination and navigational skills to complete in the top ten with a fine end of stage seventh to place them 12th overall. Stage 12 saw Jakub ‘Kuba’ Przygonski (POL) and Andrei Rudnitski (BLR) of ORLEN Team (#327) complete the day in 12th. Barely 11 minutes separated them between the next two hard charging MINI ALL4 Racing crews of Erik van Loon (NLD) / Wouter Rosegaar (NLD) of #306 Van Loon Racing (15th) and Boris Garafulic (CHL) / Filipe Palmeiro (POR) of # 313 X-raid Team in 16th.
Ending the stage in 23rd was the #323 MINI ALL4 Racing of Harry Hunt (GBR) and Andreas Schulz (GER). This result means Hunt retains tenth overall and a major result for the young Englishman in his first Dakar event. The remaining MINI ALL4 Racing family members Nazareno Lopez (ARG) and Sergio Lafuente (URU) of X-raid Team (#351), and Adam Malysz (POL) / Xavier Panseri (FRA) of ORLEN Team (#325) are still amongst the thick of the action and making ground from time lost in the early racing stages.
2016 Dakar Rally: Day 14, Stage 12, 931km San Juan – Villa Carlos Paz .
MINI ALL 4 Racing standings:
|2||Nasser Al-Attiyah (QAT)||Mathieu Baumel (FRA)||300||AXION X-raid Team||044:08:41|
|4||Mikko Hirvonen (FIN)||Michel Périn (FRA)||315||AXION X-raid Team||044:39:24|
|6||Joan ‘Nani’ Roma (ESP)||Alex Haro (ESP)||304||AXION X-raid Team||045:14:20|
|10||Harry Hunt (GB)||Andreas Schulz (GER)||323||X-raid Team||046:36:40|
|12||Orlando Terranova (ARG)||Bernardo ‘Ronnie’ Graue (ARG)||310||AXION X-raid Team||48:41:34|
|Erik van Loon (NDL)||Wouter Rosegaar (NDL)||306||Van Loon Racing||048:52:13|
|16||Jakub ‘Kuba’ Przygonski (POL)||Andrei Rudnitski (BLR)||327||ORLEN Team||049:09:14|
|22||Boris Garafulic (CHL)||Filipe Palmeiro (POR)||313||X-raid Team||052:55:25|
|TBA||Nazareno Lopez (ARG)||Sergio Lafuente (URU)||351||X-raid Team||067:40:27|
|TBA||Adam Malysz (POL)||Xavier Panseri (FRA)||325||ORLEN Team|