Stage 12 notes

17:34 - quad
253 - A first win for Declerck in 2011!

The first 4 quads have completed the day's special and Christophe Declerck (Polaris) has won, picking up his 1st stage victory in 2011 and the 4th of his career on the event. At the finishing line, the Frenchman beat Argentinean Sebastian Halpern (Yamaha) by 14", and Polish rider Lukasz Laskawiec (Yamaha) by 2'32.The leader of the general standings, Argentinean Alejandro Patronelli (Yamaha), finished 8'28 behind the stage winner.In the general standings, nonetheless the elder of the Patronelli brothers maintains command, with a lead of 58'18 over his countryman Halpern and 6:21'32 over Declerck. The day's winner will have to fight for his 3rd place on the last special tomorrow, because he only leads the 4th placed rider, Poland's Laskawiec by 3'19.

17:25 - car
300 - Sainz equals Peterhansel's record!

The first 5 cars have finished the day's special and Spaniard Carlos Sainz (VW) has won, picking up his 6th stage victory on the 33rd edition of the Dakar and the 23rd in his Career on the event, which now puts him on level terms with Frenchman Stephane Peterhansel (BMW) in the car category. At the finishing line, "El Matador" beat his team-mates South African Giniel De villiers (VW) and Qatari Nasser Al-Attiyah (VW) by 2'43 and 6'11 respectively. Frenchman Stephane Peterhansel (BMW) put in the 4th best performance of the day, 6'55 behind the day's winner. As a result in the general standings, Nasser Al-Attiyah now boasts a lead of 48'21 over De Villiers and 1:21'16 over Sainz.

16:32 - quad
253 - Declerck re-opens the gap up front

The first 5 quads have passed through CP4 after 487 km of the day's special and Frenchman Christophe Declerck (Polaris) still holds the best provisional time, and is now 1'01 ahead of Argentinean Sebastian Halpern (Yamaha) and 2'15 in front of Polish rider Lukasz Laskawiec (Yamaha)

16:25 - car
300 - Sainz sails to the front with a strong performance

Having started in 14th position this morning, Spaniard Carlos Sainz (VW) has relentlessly climbed up the places to the stage lead today. After the neutralised section, "El Matador" has resumed his crazy pace. As a result, now that the first 4 cars have reached the 457 km point of the day's special, the man from Madrid still has the best provisional time, now 1'24 ahead of his South African team-mate Giniel De Villiers (VW). As for the leader of the general standings, Qatari Nasser Al-Attiyah (VW) is taking it easy and lies 3'55 behind the stage leader.

15:50 - car
300 - Sainz, still leads after 413 km

Now that the first 5 cars have completed 413 km of the day's special, Spaniard Carlos Sainz (VW) still holds the best provisional time, 1'01 and 3'12 respectively ahead of his team-mates, South African Giniel De Villiers (VW) and Qatari Nasser Al-Attiyah (VW).Once again hindered by punctures but also an over-heating problem with his engine, Frenchman Stephane Peterhansel (BMW) trails the stage leader by 6'31.

15:39 - quad
253 - Declerck regains the lead after 413 km

The first 4 quads have completed 413 km of the day's special and Frenchman Christophe Declerck (Polaris) has regained the best provisional time, 21" ahead of Argentinean Sebastien Halpern (Yamaha) and 31" in front of Pole Lukasz Laskawiec (Yamaha).

15:05 - bike
001 - In the end, Coma wins!

The first 5 bikes have just completed the day's special and, in the end, the leader of the general standings, Spaniard Marc Coma (KTM), has won, picking up his 5th stage victory on this 33rd edition and the 15th in his career on the Dakar. At the finishing line, the Catalan beat Frenchman Cyril Despres (KTM) by 37" and Portuguese rider Helder Rodrigues (Yamaha) by 7'21.

14:59 - car
302 - The car race resumes...

First to arrive at CP2 after 294 km of the day's special, signalling the starting point of the neutralised section for the cars autos, the leader of the general standings, Qatari Nasser Al-Attiyah (VW), re-started the day's special, from CP3 (at the 341 km point).

14:40 - quad
269 - Laskawiec is the new leader at CP3

The first 4 quads have made it through CP3 after 341 km of the day's special and now Polish rider Lukasz Laskawiec (Yamaha) has the best provisional time, 49" ahead of Frenchman Christophe Declerck (Polaris) and 9'33 in front of the general standings leader, Argentina's Alejandro Patronelli (Yamaha).

14:25 - bike
002 - Despres is the virtual leader at CP4

Franco-Malian Alain Duclos (Aprilia) and Dutchmen Henk Knuiman (KTM) and Teus Visser (KTM) did not ride the 63 km loop preceding CP4, which explains why they have now been attributed the top 3 times of the day so far. However, they are likely to receive time penalties amounting to several hours.In the meantime, Frenchman Cyril Despres (KTM), of course, has the best provisional time at CP4 after 487 km of the day's special, 1'45 ahead of Spaniard Marc Coma (KTM) and 9'33 in front of Portugal's Helder Rodrigues (Yamaha).

14:15 - car
300 - The cars have reached the neutralised zone

The first 5 cars have arrived at CP2 after 294 km of the day's special, which signals the start of the neutralised stage for the cars, until CP3. Spaniard Carlos Sainz (VW) has the best provisional time, 3'55 and 7'11 respectively ahead of his team-mates, South African Giniel De Viliers (VW) and Qatari Nasser Al-Attiyah (VW).

13:54 - bike
014 - Duclos misses the last loop...

In 10th place at CP3, Franco-Malian Alain Duclos (Aprilia) carried straight on after 414 km, taking the day's truck route, and did not ride the 63 km loop reserved for the bikes, quads and cars, which of course explains why he currently has the best provisional time at CP4 after 487 km of the day's special.

13:46 - quad
253 - Declerck confirms his lead at CP2

The first 3 quads have now made it through CP2 after 294 km of the day's special and Frenchman Christophe Declerck (Polaris) still boasts the best provisional time, now 3'15 ahead of Argentinean Sebastian Halpern (Yamaha) and 3'31 in front of Pole Lukasz Laskawiec (Yamaha).

13:38 - car
308 - 1-2-3 for VW after 207 km

Now that the first 6 cars have completed 207 km of the day's special, South African Giniel De Villiers (VW) still holds the best provisional time, 1'09 and 3'35 respectively ahead of his Spanish and Qatari team-mates, Carlos Sainz (VW) and Nasser Al-Attiyah (VW).As for Frenchman Stephane Peterhansel (BMW), he trails the stage leader by 4'25.

13:34 - quad
253 - Declerck opens up a gap

The first 5 quads have just completed 254 km of the day's special and Frenchman Christophe Declerck (Polaris) is still out in front, but now has a lead of 1'54 over Argentinean Sebastian Halpern (Yamaha) and 3'48 over Polish rider Lukasz Laskawiec (Yamaha).

13:16 - bike
002 - No change at the 413 km point

The first two bikes have completed 413 km of the day's special and Frenchman Cyril Despres still has the best provisional time, 1'51 ahead of the general standings leader, Spaniard Marc Coma (KTM).

13:08 - car
300 - Sainz in 2nd at CP1

The title holder and still 3rd in the general standings, Spaniard Carlos Sainz (VW) has just passed through CP1 after 175 km of the day's special and has obtained the 2nd best provisional time, 2'11 behind the stage leader: his South African team-mate Giniel De Villiers (VW).

12:59 - quad
253 - Declerck regains some breathing space

The first 4 quads have completed 208 km of the day's special and Frenchman Christophe Declerck still leads. Better still, the Polaris rider has managed to work himself a bit of breathing space and now has a lead of 1'05 over Argentinean Sebastian Halpern (Yamaha) and a lead of 3'27 over Polish rider Lukasz Laskawiec (Yamaha).

12:49 - car
301 - A puncture for "Peter"?

The first 3 cars have just passed through CP1 after 175 km of the day's special and now South African Giniel De Villiers (VW) has obtained the best provisional time, 3'38 ahead of his Qatari team-mate Nasser Al-Attiyah (VW) and 3'50 in front of Stephane Peterhansel (BMW). The reason is simple: the Frenchman stopped for around 7 minutes after 151 km of the day's special, perhaps due to yet another puncture.

12:31 - bike
001 - Coma is withstanding Despres's charge

Now that the first 3 bikes have reached CP3 after 341 km of the day's special, Frenchman Cyril Despres (KTM) still has the best provisional time, but the title holder now only has a lead of 1'28 over the general standings leader, Spaniard Marc Coma (KTM). Portuguese rider Helder Rodrigues (Yamaha) is still in provisional 3rd place; 8'18 behind the stage leader.

12:20 - quad
253 - Declerck still leads at CP1, but...

The first 4 quads have just passed through CP1 after 175 km of the day's special and whilst Frenchman Christophe Declerck (Polaris) still holds the best provisional time, he only has a lead of 17" over Argentinean Sebastian Halpern (Yamaha). The provisionally third placed rider is Pole Lukasz Laskawiec (Yamaha), 3'44 behind the stage leader.

12:13 - car
301 - "Peter" on all out attack

Determined to try everything to grab 3rd place on the final podium from Spaniard Carlos Sainz (VW), Frenchman Stephane Peterhansel (BMW) is going on all out attack on the day's special. As a result, now that the first 3 cars have completed 117 km of the day's special, the man from Vesoul is still out in front and now has a lead of 1'22 over South African Giniel De Villiers (VW) and 5'01 over the leader of the general standings, Qatari Nasser Al-Attiyah (VW).As a reminder, at the start of the day's special this morning, the Spaniard, placed 3rd in the general standings, had a lead of 13'18 over the Frenchman.

11:59 - bike
002 - Despres leads at CP2

The first four bikes have just passed through CP2 after 294 km of the day's special and Frenchman Cyril Despres (KTM) still has the best provisional time, but is now 1'44 ahead of the general standings leader, Spaniard Marc Coma (KTM), and 8'15 in front of Portuguese rider Helder Rodrigues (Yamaha).

11:55 - quad
255 - Halpern makes a strong comeback against Declerck

Now that the first 4 quads have completed 150 km of the day's special, Christophe Declerck (Polaris) still possesses the best provisional time, but the Frenchman only has a lead of 49" over Argentinean Sebastian Halpern (Yamaha), though still 4'12 over Polish rider Lukasz Laskawiec (Yamaha).

11:49 - car
300 - "Peter" still leads

The first 4 cars have completed 84 km of the day's special and Frenchman Stephane Peterhansel (BMW) still holds the best provisional time, 20" ahead of South African Giniel De Villiers (VW) and 3'40 in front of the general standings leader, Qatari Nasser Al-Attiyah (VW).

11:39 - bike
002 - Despres on the attack

The first 8 bikes have completed 207 km of the day's special and Frenchman Cyril Despres (KTM) still leads. More importantly, the title holder now has a lead of 2'35 over the general standings leader, Spaniard Marc Coma (KTM), and 6'33 over Portugal's Helder Rodrigues (Yamaha).

11:34
Neutralisation of the car special!

Due to the especially wet conditions on the tracks between CP2 (after 294 km) and CP3 (after 341 km), the organisers have decided to insert a neutralised section in the car race between these two points. As a result, the competitors will be making the journey by road as a link stage, before resuming the route of the special from the 341 km point.

11:24 - quad
253 - Declerck loses some of his lead

The first 4 quads have now completed 117 km of the day's special and Frenchman Christophe Declerck (Polaris) still holds the best provisional time, 2'52 ahead of Argentinean Sebastian Halpern (Yamaha) and 4'52 in front of Polish rider Lukasz Laskawiec (Yamaha).

11:19 - truck
500 - Chagin true to himself

Having started from the 237 km point this morning, the first 4 of the trucks have finished the day's special (which totalled 266 km for them) and the leader of the general standings, Russian Vladimir Chagin (Kamaz) has won, picking up his 7th stage victory on this 33rd edition and the 63rd in his career on the Dakar. At the finishing line, the "Tsar" beat his team-mate and countryman Firdaus Kabirov (Kamaz) by 1'05, and Spaniard Pep Vila (Iveco) by 4'48.In the general standings, Chagin now boasts a lead of 31'36 over Kabirov and is moving closer and closer to a historic 7th Dakar title.

10:51 - car
301 - "Peter" leads after 32 km

The first 3 cars have completed 32 km of the day's special and Frenchman Stephane Peterhansel (BMW) boasts the best provisional time, 47" ahead of South African Giniel De Villiers (VW) and 2'30 in front of the general standings leader, Qatari Nasser Al-Attiyah (VW).

10:46 - quad
253 - Declerck leads after 84 km

The first 4 quads have completed 84 km of the day's special and now Frenchman Christophe Declerck (Polaris) has obtained the best provisional time, 3'59 ahead of Argentinean Sebastian Halpern (Yamaha) and 5'50 in front of Pole Lukasz Laskawiec (Yamaha).

10:40 - bike
002 - Despres still leads at CP1

The first 5 bikes have made it through CP1 after 175 km of the day's special and Frenchman Cyril Despres (KTM) still is still out in front, with a lead that now stands at 52" over the general standings leader, Spaniard Marc Coma (KTM), and 7'01 over Portuguese rider Helder Rodrigues (Yamaha).

10:22 - truck
500 - Some breathing space for Chagin

The first 4 of the trucks, for which the day's special started at the 237 km point, have just completed 487 km and the leader of the general standings, Russian Vladimir Chagin (Kamaz), still has the best provisional time, 22" ahead of his team-mate and countryman Firdaus Kabirov (Kamaz) and 3'43 in front of Spaniard Pep Vila (Iveco).

10:14 - car
302 - Al-Attiyah gets the car special underway!

The winner of the 11th stage yesterday and comfortable leader of the general standings, Qatari Nasser Al-Attiyah (VW) kicked off proceedings in the day's car special, at 10.07 AM as scheduled. He was followed 2 minutes later by Frenchman Stephane Peterhansel (BMW).

10:10 - truck
502 - Kabirov closes back in on Chagin

Having started at the 237 km point of the day's special, the first 4 trucks have just completed 413 km and Russian Vladimir Chagin (Kamaz) still has the best provisional time. However, the "Tsar" now only has a lead of 11" over his team-mate and countryman Firdaus Kabirov (Kamaz). Provisional third place is currently occupied by Spaniard Pep Vila (Iveco), 3'36 behind the stage leader.

10:04 - bike
002 - Despres continues in the same vein

Now that the first 4 bikes have completed 117 km of the day's special, Frenchman Cyril Despres (KTM) still possesses the best provisional time, 1'09 ahead of the general standings leader, Spaniard Marc Coma (KTM), and 4'33 in front of Portugal's Helder Rodrigues (Yamaha).

09:44 - truck
500 - Chagin opens the gap at CP3

The first 10 trucks (who started from the 237 km point) have just passed through CP3 after 341 km of the day's special and Russian Vladimir Chagin (Kamaz) still holds the best provisional time. Better still, the "Tsar" has opened a gap on his main pursuers, because he now has leads of 15" and 54" respectively over his team-mates and countrymen Firdaus Kabirov (Kamaz) and Ilgizar Mardeev (Kamaz).

09:41 - bike
002 - Despres leads after 84 km

The first 6 bikes have completed 84 km of the day's special and Frenchman Cyril Despres (KTM) still holds the best provisional time, 59" ahead of the general standings leader, Spaniard Marc Coma (KTM), and 3'13 ahead of Portugal's Helder Rodrigues (Yamaha.)

09:35 - quad
269 - Laskawiec leads after 32 km

Now that the first 4 quads have completed 32 km of the day's special, Polish rider Lukasz Laskawiec (Yamaha) holds the best provisional time, 44" ahead of the general standings leader, Argentinean Alejandro Patronelli (Yamaha), and 56" in front of his countryman Tomas Maffei (Yamaha).

09:30 - truck
500 - Chagin leads at CP2

The trucks, which set off from the 237 km point of the day's special this morning, have just passed through CP2 after 294 km of the day's special and Russian Vladimir Chagin (Kamaz) boasts the best provisional time, 2" ahead of his team-mate and countryman Firdaus Kabirov (Kamaz) and 52" in front of German Franz Echter (MAN).

09:08 - bike
002 - Despres leads after 32 km

The first 10 bikes have just completed 32 km of the day's special and Frenchman Cyril Despres (KTM), 1st to start this morning, has the best provisional time, 39" ahead of the leader of the general standings, Spaniard Marc Coma (VW), and 1'11 in front of Portugal's Helder Rodrigues (Yamaha).

08:45 - quad
255 - The quad race is underway...

The winner of the 11th stage yesterday, Argentinean Sebatsien Halpern (Yamaha), kicked off proceedings for the day's quad special, starting in 38th position of the bike-quad pack, at 8.32 AM as scheduled. He was followed 2'30 later by his countryman Tomas Maffei (Yamaha).

08:16 - truck
500 - The truck race is underway!

Today is a far from ordinary day for the trucks which will be starting the special from the 237 km point. The winner of the 11th stage yesterday and leader of the general standings, Russian Vladimir Chagin (Kamaz), kicked off proceedings at 8.05 AM as scheduled. The "Tsar" was followed 2 minutes later by Spaniard Pep Vila (Iveco).

08:10
Soaked!

Heavy rain fell throughout the night on the area where the day's special is located and the tracks are very wet at various points, with "huge puddles" indicated at certain places, such as the 67 km or 107 km points. These conditions will be very difficult for the competitors who will have to be especially careful in these zones where the terrain is now very slippery.

08:05 - bike
002 - Despres gets the day's special started

On completion of the 11th stage yesterday, 205 crews (94 bikes, 14 quads, 56 cars and 41 trucks) were authorised to take starter's orders for the day's special. Frenchman Cyril Despres (KTM), winner of the 11th special, kicked off proceedings at 7.55 as scheduled. He was followed two minutes later by the leader of the general standings, his best enemy, Spaniard Marc Coma (KTM).

06:01
Nothing to win, but everything to lose...

There are 555 km on the menu for the competitors on this penultimate special and still some sandy sections at the beginning of the stage, before they encounter tracks more typical of the WRC.The trucks, however, will not be taking part in the beginning of the special, since it is too narrow, and will start from the 237 km point. Another special feature is that the rally's heavyweights will be opening the road because they will get to grips with the special almost at the same time as the bikes. A key factor could be the state of the terrain that the trucks leave behind them, especially since rain is forecast for tomorrow.In sporting terms, the struggle is over in the car and bike categories, in which the leaders can content themselves with maintaining their leads in the general standings. Caution should be the watchword though: whilst they have nothing to win on this penultimate special, they must be careful, for the engines will undoubtedly be worn after 8,900 km of hard labour. Fortunately, the mishaps suffered by the title holder, Spaniard Carlos Sainz (VW), during the 11th stage should serve as a lesson to the pretenders for places on the final podium in Buenos Aires.

-source: dakar

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About this article
Series Dakar
Drivers Carlos Sainz , Stéphane Peterhansel , Cyril Despres , Franz Echter , Marc Coma , Nasser Al-Attiyah , Vladimir Chagin , Firdaus Kabirov , Alain Duclos , Helder Rodrigues , Ilgizar Mardeev , Henk Knuiman , Pep Vila , Lukasz Laskawiec , Alejandro Patronelli , Tomas Maffei , Sebastian Halpern , Christophe Declerck