Stage 3: San Miguel de Tucuman to San Salvador de Jujuy
January 4, 2011
David Casteu: "I still have last year's memories on my mind"
"This morning, in the first river bed, it reminded me a little of last year when I fell, so I made sure I was extremely careful. For overtaking, there was a lot of dust and I didn't want to take any risks. I still have last year's memories on my mind. We're here in South America where I hurt myself. What's more, the bikes are suffering enormously. I haven't changed my engine yet. I hope I can keep it until we leave Argentina, because we're only allowed three engines".
Chaleco Lopez: "Roll on Chile"
"I started at a good pace, but then I had a problem with the fuel intake. I had to stop, repair and lost around ten minutes. After that, I rode at a gentler pace. I knew it would be a difficult day, but I'm still here. I hope that things will change once we get to Chile and I'm at home".
Olivier Pain: "Not too far from the leaders"
"During the first part, it was ok. In all, I enjoyed myself, even if I had problems with my road-book scroller. I had to ride all the stage scrolling by hand. The switch wasn't working. In the second part, the paper started to tear, so I had to stop twice and sort it out before continuing. Apart from that, the bike is working really well and I feel very good on it. I'm not too far from the leaders, so it's great for my aims for the end of the rally".
Marc Coma: "A really authentic Dakar day"
"That was a really authentic Dakar day: the first part with lots of navigation, then more riding on the rest. I'm happy with where I am. I took advantage of a little navigation mistake by Cyril Despres. Of course it's important to win a special, but my aim is to win the rally".
Cyril Despres: "In the end, I limited the damage"
"Marc Coma caught up with me very quickly. There were a lot of riders at the start of the special. I was very careful during the first 10 kilometres and then after 11 km I got it completely wrong. I didn't lose two hours, but several precious minutes. In the end, I limited the damage, because I finished 20 seconds behind Marc. He must have gain 2 minutes 20 seconds on me. It's not huge amount of time, but I would've liked to have kept it for myself".
Krzysztof Holowczcyc: "It's not the right time to see where your limits are"
"I tried to push a little bit more on this stage. The car is more difficult to handle, but in my opinion we've been able to drive without any single problem. It was a good clean stage and we will try step by step to get closer to the best drivers. I'm not really 100% confident with the car. I have had the possibility to go faster but I don't want to take risks. It's not the right time on the Dakar to try and see where your limits are".
Giniel De Villiers: "In the open desert, you can take more risks"
"The day was quite beautiful. We saw different landscapes from the start to finish, all the different landscapes that you can see in the world. The guys in front, Carlos and Nasser are really pushing hard. It's difficult to follow them for the moment. We're trying to increase our pace bit by bit. You can lose more than you can gain on these stages. If you go off the road, you're down into the ravine and that's it, your rally is over. In the open desert, you take more risks".
Stephane Peterhansel: "We've limited the damage"
"There was a little bit of rough terrain at the start with river beds that weren't easy to find because there were no tracks. We hesitated a bit and lost some time. In the second section, we left caution to the wind a little and clawed backs some time on Al Attiyah. Still, over the whole day, we were distanced but not by too much. Over these last three days, we've limited the damage. We're trying to look at where we're losing ground and where we're gaining it. It's not catastrophic. The car is working really well. This year, everything is going well in the very technical special stages".
Nasser Al Attiyah: "I don't care about the special stage victory"
"I'm very disappointed. We had exactly the same problem as yesterday. We completely lost power after 200 km. I don't know why. That's three days the same thing has happened. I gained 1 minute 30 on Carlos in the first part, but I lost my lead on the technical section where you must always use 1st, 2nd and 3rd gear. We must fix the problem. I don't care about our time or the special stage victory. Tomorrow there will be dunes and soft sand and that will be a problem".
Carlos Sainz: "Really difficult to open the road on"
"The first part was really difficult to open the road on, right from the start. I'm more or less happy with my day. We'd lost a minute and a half to Nasser (Al Attiyah) by the end of the first section, but in the end we made up most of the time lost by pushing more on the last section where there was less navigation".