Dakar SS4: Fourth place on the stage for Seaidan

– Przygonski finishes eighth
– Riyadh now the home of the Dakar for four nights

Two X-raid crews finished in the top ten on today’s fourth leg to Riyadh. Yasir Seaidan (KSA) and Alexey Kuzmich were fourth in the MINI JCW Rally and climbed into eleventh place in the overall standings. Jakub “Kuba” Przygonski (POL) and Timo Gottschalk (GER) ended the day in eighth place in the MINI JCW Buggy. That result saw them move up the overall standings into seventh place. Argentineans Sebastian Halpern and Bernardo ‘Ronnie’ Graue finished 13th in the MINI JCW Buggy and are now ninth overall.

Denis Krotov and Konstantin Zhiltsov reached Riyadh in 34th place in their MINI JCW Buggy. The MINI ALL4 Racing crew of Laia Sanz (ESP) and Maurizio Gerini (ITA) finished 40th.

Seaidan had a good day from the start and was able to keep pace with the top five from the word go. Having dropped time as a result of multiple punctures in the middle of the stage, he briefly dropped out of the top ten. However, he was able to work his way back up the standings and reached his home city of Riyadh in fourth place.

Yasir Seaidan: « That was a great stage for us. It was fast – some sections with rocks and dunes. We pushed hard and gave it our all. We suffered three punctures but continued to put our foot down. We are pleased to have reached the finish in fourth place. »

At the start of the stage, it looked as though Przygonski was going to miss out on a place in the top ten. However, the more kilometres he covered in the MINI JCW Buggy, the faster he became. Despite navigation proving quite a challenge, his co-driver Gottschalk also produced a flawless performance and the pair arrived at the finish in eighth place. Przygonski and Gottschalk climbed from ninth to seventh overall on the back of today’s effort.

Kuba Przygonski: « Today’s stage was very long and a mix of rocks, high-speed sections and dunes. There were also a few water crossings. The navigation was not easy, but we avoided making any mistakes. Our rhythm was better and faster today. A few of the changes we made to the MINI paid dividends. »

Halpern was unlucky today. He was forced to stop for two punctures, and consequently lost valuable minutes. However, 13th place on today’s stage was enough for him to remain in the top ten of the overall standings.

Sebastian Halpern: « Today’s stage was too fast for me personally, but very good for the Buggy! Unfortunately, we had two punctures and a technical issue. However, we are still in the top ten overall, and we are happy with that. »

The Dakar circus will remain in the Saudi capital for the next four nights. Tomorrow and on Friday, the drivers will return to Riyadh at the end of a loop. The rest day is scheduled for Saturday. Tomorrow’s fifth leg is 560 kilometres long, with 346 kilometres against the clock. The drivers will first be faced with fast, rocky sections, before having to cross a large dune field.

Dakar Rally – Result SS4
1. N. Al-Attiyah / M. Baumel – Toyota – 3h 54m 40s
2. S. Loeb / F. Lurquin – BRX – 3h 55m 05s
3. C. Sainz / L. Cruz – Audi – 2h 26m 51s – 3h 55m 32s
4. Y. Seaidan / A. Kuzmich – MINI JCW Rally – 3h 56m 14s
5. Y. Al-Rajhi / M. Orr – Toyota – 3h 54m 26s…
8. J. Przygonski / T. Gottschalk – MINI JCW Buggy – 3h 59m 50s…
13. S. Halpern / B. Graue – MINI JCW Buggy – 4h 10m 31s…
21. V. Zala / P. Fiuza – MINI JCW Rally – 4h 19m 57s…
34. D. Krotov / K. Zhiltsov – MINI JCW Buggy – 4h 35m 00s…
44. L. Sanz / M. Gerini – MINI ALL4 Racing – 5h 23m 23s…

Overall standings after SS4
1. N. Al-Attiyah / M. Baumel – Toyota – 13h 26m 02s
2. S. Loeb / F. Lurquin – BRX – 14h 04m 07s
3. Y. Al-Rajhi / M. Orr – Toyota – 14h 15m 17s
4. G. de Villiers / D. Murphy – Toyota – 14h 15m 19s
5. L. Alvarez / A. Monleon – Toyota – 14h 20m 00s…
7. J. Przygonski / T. Gottschalk – MINI JCW Buggy – 14h 37m 59s…
9. S. Halpern / B. Graue – MINI JCW Buggy – 14h 43m 25s…
11. Y. Seaidan / A. Kuzmich – MINI JCW Rally – 14h 56m 20s…
13. V. Zala / P. Fiuza – MINI JCW Rally – 15h 23m 31s…
20. D. Krotov / K. Zhiltsov – MINI JCW Buggy – 15h 52m 46s…
32. L. Sanz / M. Gerini – MINI ALL4 Racing – 17h 15m 14s…

 

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