Dakar’s Stage 9 cancelled

Dakar’s Stage 9 cancelled

Dmitry Sotnikov, Dakar Rally, Dakar
Dmitry Sotnikov / Source: Red Bull Media House

2017 Dakar Rally Stage 9 was cancelled by the event organizers. They published a statement on the official website.

The statement reads as follows:

“A massive landslide caused by thunderstorms happened this morning at 10.30am on the road used to join the bivouac, 40 kilometers north of Jujuy, 160kms away from Salta, hitting the village of Volcan.”

“According to the Argentinian civil security, victims are deplored in the population and considerable damage has been observed.”

“The organization offered its sanitary facilities to reinforce the local safety support on site. As the road is cut off, most of the vehicles, competitors, assistance and logistics from the Dakar caravan were diverted on an alternative route through San Antonio de los Cobres, extending the distance of the liaison by about 200 km. They will not be able to reach the Salta bivouac in time to start the race.”

“A number of larger vehicles will not be able to use that road either.”

“The day will be devoted to regroup the race caravan in Chilecito to continue the event by giving the start on the 12th of January of stage 10, between Chilecito and San Juan.”

Sébastien Loeb leads in the car standings after stage 8

“We had to work on our car at last night’s halt in Uyuni”, he said. “I helped Daniel [Elena] until around 11pm before going to bed. The first part of stage 8 went well for us and our car ran like clockwork. The conditions were far from perfect and we came across stretches of standing water that were up to 600 metres long. Stéphane [Peterhansel] was a little faster than us during the early off-road section but we had the edge when the terrain switched to more conventional tracks. We did our best to open up a gap. But we then punctured on a concealed rock in a ford about 80km from the end. We went on to win the stage, though, and we’re back in the overall lead.”

“We will be first on the road on Thursday. The navigation (we hear) will be just as hard, if not harder. We are still in the fight, and that’s what counts, even though Stéphane isn’t far behind. He’s going well, so we will need to keep pushing without making any mistakes. Daniel has a good grasp now of calling the notes, even on the off-road stuff. It’s going well for us but this is far from over…”