The bivouac and pits are like nothing we have ever seen before and are absolutely massive.
Author: Craig Peronne
Well that didn’t go as planned to put it lightly. While the first stage was a long one in overall length at 502 miles, only 111 of those were composed of timed special stages. That didn’t stop the stage from basically destroying any hopes of an American overall win. Robby Gordon would start the Special Stage in a bad way a full 17 minutes late off the starting line. Even more problems were encountered during the brief stage with mechanical problems and the back half of the carbon fiber body completely flying off the Gordini. After finally limping to the finish, Gordon finished 133rd a full two hours and eight minutes behind stage winner Carlos Sousa. The huge gap is impossible to overcome and all Gordon can do now is hope for a stage win.
BJ Baldwin also encountered problems reportedly running out of gas.
BJ Baldwin’s Jeffries’ Chevy Colorado also encountered major problems coming in 52 minutes behind the winner in 92nd. Again, the gap is too big to overcome and all BJ can do is try for a stage win. However, in a brand-new racer and his first year in Dakar, a stage win would still be an amazing feat.
Little was known about Peter Hajas in his Brenthel-built racer as he had yet to finish or show up on any results. Just before we were about to call it quits though, Hajas crossed the line a full five hours behind the leader. Obviously he encountered major problems, but his hope is just to finish this year’s Dakar which is still entirely possible.
At 9:30 pm Gordon had yet to show up to his pit making for what will be a very long night.