The Dakar Rally has hit the halfway point. There is just a week to go before the event is over. On Saturday, the competitors got a much needed rest day before starting Sunday’s Stage 6 in Arequipa. Erroneous media reports from Peru had Robby Gordon out of the race. A clerical error on the part of the ASO added Gordon’s entire team to the withdraw list after Cole Potts failed to start Stage 5 of the rally. The issue was quickly fixed.
Stage 6 tracking showed Gordon failed to clear the last two waypoints. Blade Hildebrand also missed the last two waypoints. Cole Potts missed Stages 5 and 6 of the rally but did start Monday’s Stage 7 in San Juan de Marcona. Potts says he has had a rough couple of days. Potts is celebrating his birthday in Peru and is excited to get back to rallying. He will race in the half-marathon class, which will pit all of the cars against each other that have not finished all of the stages. A new rule for 2019 allows vehicles to re-enter the rally despite not finishing a stage.
Stage 6 for Casey Currie was successful. Currie finished in 3rd Place in the UTV class. He moves up the ranks to 5th overall. Currie posted to his Instagram: “The desert is all types of new terrain for me.” Currie drove through some of the largest dunes he has ever seen. High winds in Peru also are not helping the drivers.
Nasser Al-Attiyah has regained the overall car lead from Stephane Peterhansel in the car class. Peterhansel lost 22 minutes after turning around to help teammate Nani Roma, who was stuck in the sand just 5 kilometers from the finish line during Stage 6. Peterhansel then got himself stuck, costing valuable time. In the large-truck class, Eduard Nikolaev continues to lead the overall standings. Stage 8 will take the competitors from San Juan de Marcona to Pisco.