Dakar Cars, Stage 12: Hirvonen takes maiden stage win

Former WRC star Mikko Hirvonen picked up his first stage win in his rookie Dakar Rally, while Stephane Peterhansel preserved his massive lead in the overall standings.

Hirvonen, making his Dakar debut with X-raid Mini, was just nine seconds quicker than team leader Nasser Al-Attiyah at the completion of the marathon 481km stage.

South Africa's Leeroy Poulter looked set to take the honours for Toyota, having led each step of the way before slipping behind Hirvonen and Al-Attiyah at the penultimate waypoint - although he did hang on to third ahead of teammate Giniel de Villiers.

Nani Roma followed the Toyota duo in fifth, ahead of Vladimir Vasilyev and Orly Terranova.

In a stage where none of the Peugeots threatened for the top spot, Peterhansel gave up 11 minutes to Al-Attiyah, holding on to a 41-minute advantage as Dakar enters its final 180km stage.

Teammates Cyril Despres and Sebastien Loeb were slightly quicker than Peterhansel, with Loeb completing the stage as the top-placed Peugeot eight minutes off the pace.

Standings after Stage 12:

Pos.No.Driver

Car

Time/Gap
1 302 Stephane Peterhansel
Jean-Paul Cottret

Peugeot

43h27m42s
2 300

Nasser Al-Attiyah

Matthieu Baumel

Mini

40m59s
3 301

Giniel de Villiers

Dirk von Zitzewitz

Toyota

1h07m6s
4 315

Mikko Hirvonen

Michel Perin

Mini

1h11m42s
5 319

Leeroy Poulter

Robert Howie

Toyota

1h36m16s
6 304

Nani Roma

Alex Haro

Mini

1h46m16s
7 321

Cyril Despres

David Castera

Peugeot

1h55m05s
8 307

Vladimir Vasilyev

Konstantin Zhiltsov

Toyota

2h04m49s
9 314

Sebastien Loeb

Daniel Elena

Peugeot

2h22m46s
10 323

Harry Hunt

Andy Schulz

Mini

3h08m58s
Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series Dakar
Event Dakar 2016
Sub-event Stage 12: San Juan - Villa Carlos Paz
Drivers Stéphane Peterhansel , Mikko Hirvonen
Article type Stage report
Tags car