Stage 1 Buenos Aires to Cordoba notes

Stage 1 - Buenos Aires to Cordoba Friday 1 and Saturday 2 January, 2010 Bikes / Quads * Liaison : 349 km * Speciale : 219 km * Liaison : 84 km * Total : 652 km Cars / Trucks * Liaison : 349 km * Speciale : 251 km * Liaison : 84 km * Total :...

Stage 1 - Buenos Aires to Cordoba
Friday 1 and Saturday 2 January, 2010

Bikes / Quads
* Liaison : 349 km
* Speciale : 219 km
* Liaison : 84 km
* Total : 652 km

Cars / Trucks
* Liaison : 349 km
* Speciale : 251 km
* Liaison : 84 km
* Total : 684 km

Breaking news per ASO Dakar website:

07:56
READY, STEADY, GO!

Hello and welcome everyone. After the administrative and technical scrutineering in Buenos Aires, a total of 362 competitors - 151 bikes, 25 quads, 134 cars and 52 trucks - have been admitted to the race this morning at 4:25 and will start the first stage of the 32nd Dakar rally in Argentina and Chile.

08:25
Route modification

Due to localised flooding, several fords over rivers will not be possible. As a result, for safety reasons, the organisers have been forced to move the start to the 52-km mark on the route initially planed for the first special stage... Consequently, this first timed section between Colon and Cordoba will last for 168 km for bikes and quads and 199 km for cars and trucks... This means that the start times for each category have been postponed by 30 minutes. This first special will therefore start at 9.30 local time (12.30 GMT), with the winner of last year's bike category, Spaniard Marc Coma (KTM) kicking off proceedings.

08:35 - Bike
74 - Moto - 74 -- 1 step forward, 2 steps back for Hatton

Behind the handlebars of his Team Rally Raid Canada KTM, Donald Hatton rode the first 75 kilometres of the link stage this morning before realising he had forgotten his checking card at the bivouac in Colon. The Canadian was forced to make a U-turn to retrieve the precious document, before returning to get stuck into the day's special.

09:41 - Bike
1 - IT'S ALL GO FOR THE DAKAR 2010!

After a first link stage of 400 km, which was 52km longer than initially planned, the title holder in the bike category, Spaniard Marc Coma (KTM) kicked off proceedings by starting the first special stage, now reduced to 168 km, at 9.30 as scheduled. Two minutes later, he was followed by the winner of the Dakar in 2007, Frenchman Cyril Despres (KTM).

10:44 - Bike
1 - Coma in the lead at CP1

The first rider to start out from Colon this morning, Spaniard Marc Coma (KTM) has reached CP1 (after 84 km). With a time of 48:52, the Spaniard has a lead of 2" and 32" over Frenchmen Cyril Despres (KTM) and David Casteu (Sherco) respectively.

10:50 - Bike
8 - Problems already for Verhoeven...

Having suffered mechanical problems after 320 km of the link stage, Dutchman Frans Verhoeven (BMW) has already been forced to stop and make repairs before rejoining the race and finally getting to grips with the day's special stage. However, he is already 40 minutes behind his original starting time. He has been able to claw some time back, though, since he has just passed the 25 km marker.

11:17 - Bike
1 - 4 seconds more for Coma at CP2

The provisional leader of this 1st special stage, Spaniard Marc Coma (KTM) has just gone through CP2, after 143 km of the day's special stage, and now boasts a lead of 12 seconds over Frenchman Cyril Despres (KTM).

11:40 - Bike
3 - Casteu grabs first place!

Now that the first 3 bikes have reached the finish of this first special stage, Frenchman David Casteu (Sherco), 3rd to start from Colon this morning, is provisional winner of this first special of 2010, 3 tiny seconds ahead of his countryman Cyril Despres (KTM). The title holder and first out this morning, Spaniard Marc Coma, came in provisional 3rd place, 12 seconds behind Casteu...

11:52 - Car
300 - IT'S ALL GO FOR THE CARS!

Dakar 2009 winner South African Giniel de Villiers (Volkswagen) kicked off proceedings for the first car special stage of the Dakar 2010, at 11.38 as scheduled. 3 minutes, later, he was followed by Frenchman Stephane Peterhansel (BMW)...

12:20 - Quad
252 - Sonik leads provisionally at CP1

Third to start from Colon this morning, Rafal Sonik (Yamaha) was in the lead in today's special stage at CP1. The Polish rider boasts leads of 49" and 1'59 over the Argentine Patronelli brothers (Yamaha), with Marcos ahead of Alejandro. The winner of the 2009 edition, Czech rider Josef Machacek (Yamaha) suffered from kicking off proceedings in the quad category and was back in 7th place after 84 km, already 4'07 behind the leader.

12:50 - Car
302 - A first warning for Gordon...

Faithful to his reputation, American Robby Gordon (Hummer), third to start in Colon this morning, set off at neck-breaking speed in pursuit of the 4-wheel drive cars piloted by De Villiers and Peterhansel ahead of him. As a result, after 100 km, Gordon missed a bend and went careering straight on into the La Pampa's grasslands. Fortunately, the American was more shaken than stirred. In fact, he only lost a few seconds due to this incident and was lucky to avoid any damage to his vehicle.

12:54 - Quad
252 - Sonik building his lead...

With the first 10 quads through CP2, Poland's Rafal Sonik (Yamaha) is still in the lead and is building a gap between himself and his rivals, since he now boasts a lead of 1'23 over Marcos Patronelli (Yamaha) and 2'11 over the Argentinean rider's brother Alejandro (Yamaha).

13:02 - Quad
252 - Sonik grabs 1st place

Now that the first 5 quads have finished the first special stage of this 32nd edition of the Dakar, Rafal Sonik (Yamaha) has scored the provisional best time. With 2.08'49, the Polish rider climbs to the top of the general standings, 1'55 ahead of Argentinean Marcos Patronelli (Yamaha) and 2'34 in front of last year's winner, Czech rider Josef Machacek (Yamaha), today's 3rd placed rider.

13:17 - Car
301 - Peterhansel and Sainz start battle...

Now that the first 4 cars have made it through CP1, Stephane Peterhansel (BMW) is in the lead. Having started second this morning, behind last year's winner Giniel de Villiers (VW), the Frenchman hit out hard to reign in the South African's lead... His rival is already hot on his heels, because at CP1, he only had a lead of 13" over Volkswagen's leading driver, Carlos Sainz, who started 4th today. The Spaniard is not in a mood to test the water either, driving at a very fast pace. As a result, whilst they are only separated by a few seconds, both men have distance 3rd placed American Robby Gordon (Hummer) by more than 2'15. The expected duel for the Dakar 2010 is already definitely underway!

13:20 - Car
304 - Nani Roma leads at CP1!

5th to start this morning, Joan 'Nani' Roma (BMW) boasted the leading time at CP1. The Spaniard has a lead of 32" over team-mate Peterhansel and 45" over his countryman Sainz who is now third.

14:06 - Car
304 - Roma increases the gap...

Now that the first 5 cars have made it through CP2, Nani Roma (BMW) is still in the lead and has increased the gap separating him from his pursuers. He now boasts a lead of 1'47 over his countryman Carlos Sainz (VW) and 2'34 over his team-mate Stephane Peterhansel (BMW).

14:20 - Car
304 - Roma surprises everyone!

Now that the first 5 cars have finished this first special stage of the Dakar 2010, the astonishing Nani Roma (BMW) has finished in provisional first place. Having made the most of his starting position -- 5th to hit the road, with no need to find his way and with a very fresh terrain in front of him -- the Spaniard attacked from start to finish, coming home 2'07 ahead of his countryman and major rival for victory Carlos Sainz (VW), and 2'50 in front of his BMW team-mate, Stephane Peterhansel.

15:20 - Truck
500 - The trucks are on their way!

The trucks, the last category to tackle the first special of this Dakar 2010, kicked off proceedings at 14.50 as scheduled. And as is customary, it was the title holder Russian Firdaus Kabirov (Kamaz) who had the privilege of setting off first. Two minutes later, he was followed by his team leader, "the Tsar", Vladimir Chagin (Kamaz)...

16:36 - Truck 501 - Chagin leads at CP1

Now that the first 3 trucks have made it through CP1, the "le Tsar" Vladimir Chagin (Kamaz) leads the first truck special stage of this 32nd edition of the Dakar. Already 5 times winner of the event, the Russian only holds a slender lead of 7" over Czech driver Alès Loprais (Tatra). Provisional third place goes to the title holder, Firdaus Kabirov (Kamaz), who already trials his team leader by 3'20.

17:30 - Truck
501 - Chagin opens the gap...

Now that the first 3 trucks have passed through CP2 on this 1st special of the Dakar 2010, Vladimir Chagin (Kamaz) still leads, now 32" ahead of Czech driver Alès Loprais (Tatra), and 3'24 in front of his countryman Firdaus Kabirov (Kamaz).

17:52 - Truck
501 - Back to the winning habit for Chagin

Now that the first 5 trucks have completed the near 200-km loop of this first special in the Dakar 2010, Russian Vladimir Chagin is the provisional winner. With a time of 2.35:47, the "Tsar" beat Czech driver Alès Loprais (Tatra) by 27 seconds and his countryman and team-mate Firdaus Kabirov (Kamaz) by 4 minutes.

18:00 - Quad
Stage 1 summary

Pending validation of the results, Poland's Rafal Sonik (Yamaha) won the first stage of this 32nd Dakar. With a time of 2.08:49, the Polish rider has of course taken control of the general standings, 1'55 ahead of the stage's local boy, Argentine Marcos Patronelli (Yamaha), and 2'34 in front of Czech rider Josef Machacek, winner of the 2009 edition.

18:11 - Truck
Stage 1 summary

Pending validation of the results by the race stewards, five time winner of the event, Russian Vladimir Chagin (Kamaz) has won the first special stage of this 32nd Dakar, bringing his record of special stage victories in the truck category to 48. With a time of 2.35:47, the "Tsar" leads the general standings, but is only 27 seconds ahead of Czech driver Alès Loprais (Tatra). The surprise winner of last year's race, following his team-mate Chagin's problems on the last stage, Russian Firdaus Kabirov (Kamaz) lies in 3rd place, but already trails the leader by 4 minutes.

18:18 - Bike
Stage 1 summary

Pending validation of the results, Frenchman David Casteu created a big surprise on this first stage by picking up his second special stage victory on the Dakar. With a time of 1.50:00, the rider from Nice, who chose to set up his own team using 450cc bikes made by French constructor Sherco, takes control of the general standings, but is only 3 tiny seconds ahead of his friend and rival, Frenchman Cyril Despres (KTM). Last year's winner, Spaniard Marc Coma (KTM), came home in 3rd position, 12 seconds behind the leader.

18:24 - Car
Stage 1 summary

Pending validation of the results by the race stewards, Spaniard Nani Roma (BMW) grabbed the 2nd stage victory of his Dakar career in the car category, on the first special stage of this 32nd edition, 2'07 ahead of his countryman Carlos Sainz (VW) and 2'50 in front of Frenchman Stephane Peterhansel (BMW). As a result, Roma heads the general standings at the end of a 1st day notable for the careful start made by the winner of the 2009 race: South African Giniel De Villiers lies back in 5th place, already 4'30 behind the leader. In the Open category, unsurprisingly, American Robby Gordon (Hummer) was victorious, with a 6th placed special stage finish. In the Production category, Japan's Jun Mitsuhashi (Toyota) won, but finished only 15" ahead of Frenchman Ronan Chabot (Toyota).

-source: aso

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About this article
Series Dakar
Drivers Robby Gordon , Carlos Sainz , Stéphane Peterhansel , Giniel de Villiers , Cyril Despres , Nani Roma , Marc Coma , Jun Mitsuhashi , Vladimir Chagin , Firdaus Kabirov , David Casteu , Ales Loprais , Frans Verhoeven , Ronan Chabot , Josef Machacek , Marcos Patronelli , Rafal Sonik