Stage 9: Nouakchott to Kiffa January 9, 2006 Connection 30 km - Special 599 km - Connection 245 km Total 874 km The well track For the rally's longest special, stretches of dense dunes over twenty kilometres in length follow on from each other...
Stage 9: Nouakchott to Kiffa
January 9, 2006
Connection 30 km - Special 599 km - Connection 245 km
Total 874 km
The well track
For the rally's longest special, stretches of dense dunes over twenty kilometres in length follow on from each other at the beginning and the end of the route. Between the two sandy stretches, driving will be over a fast, rocky track. At places, the track crosses large dunes which will have to be got round to stay on large, black-soil plateaux.
07:40 - The big one
The last Mauritanian special is also the longest of the whole rally. For close to 600km, the competitors will have to cover huge dune portions. Between these crossings, faster tracks will allow the bikers and drivers to rest. But these fast tracks are also very rocky.
After the nightmare of stage 8 from Atar to Nouakchott, the contenders for stage victory will be numerous in the Volkswagen team, starting with Carlos Sainz and Bruno Saby, that have lost all hope of overall success. The terrain should suit the Race Touareg II but also the Mitsubishis of Luc Alphand and Stephane Peterhansel, that will start an internal battle in the Japanese team and will fight for every single second. The bikers will again start in the reverse order of the previous stage, like stage 7. David Casteu will therefore take off last.
09:34 - Casteu last to start
Like for stage 7 between Zouerat and Atar, the bikers have started today's stage 9 between Nouakchott and Kiffa in the reverse order of the previous special. David Casteu has therefore taken off last at 8:20, two minutes after Chris Blais and four minutes after Cyril Despres.
09:40 - Time penalty for De Gavardo
Chile's Carlo De Gavardo was given a 1 hour time penalty yesterday for speeding during stage 8 from Atar to Nouakchott. The speed limit for the bikers is this year of 160 km/h. The KTM-Repsol therefore drops from third place overall to fifth 1h11'46" adrift. A very disappointed De Gavardo admitted he didn't quite understand. Before this time penalty he was within shooting distance of race leader Marc Coma (11'46").
09:44 - New overall standing
1. Marc Coma (KTM in 30h49'20"
2. Isidre Esteve (KTM) at 6'23"
3. Cyril Despres (KTM) at 26'54"
4. Giovanni Sala (KTM) at 44'28"
5. Carlo De Gavardo (KTM) at 1h11'46"
09:50 - Time penalties
Quite a few bikers have been given 2 hour time penalties for missing out on a way point (WPM) during stage 8 betwen Atar and Nouakchott. Among the top riders who missed the GPS point are Jean De Azevedo, Andy Caldecott, Michel Gau and David Fretigne.
09:58 - Three non-starters
Three bikers have not started the day's special from Nouakchott to Kiffa: Hugo Payen, Jean-Luc Fonjallaz and Mike Hugues.
10:38 - Vinters first at CP1
Latvia's Janis Vinters (KTM) was the first to make it to CP1 (km 128)... So far 10 bikers have reached the first CP and Marc Coma has the best time.
10:46 - The golden couple
Due to the day's reverse starting order, the leader of the overall standing Marc Coma and the best lady biker Ludivine Puy made it together at CP1.
11:00 - Coma fastest, Despres second
At CP1 (km 124) Marc Coma has set the fastest time. The Spaniard has a 51" lead on Cyril Despres and 59" on Arvis Vinters.
11:30 - Cars on their way to CP1
The first cars have covered about 100kms... Taking off first after winning the previous special, Thierry Magnaldi has been caught by overall leader Stephane Peterhansel.
11:49 - Coma fastest at CP2
At km 235 (CP2), Marc Coma still has the fastest time of the bikers. The Spaniard however has seen his lead on Despres drop down to 17" (it was of 51" at CP1). Third so far is surprising Portuguese Helder Rodrigues at 5'04".
12:01 - Peterhansel fastest at CP1
At the first check point of the day (km 128) Stephane Peterhansel has clocked the fastest time so far after overtaking Thierry Magnaldi. Second is Mitusbishi team mate Luc Alphand, 56" adrift. Third is Giniel De Villiers (VW) at 3'21, followed by Jutta Kleinschmidt at 4'01" and Magnaldi's Schlesser-Ford buggy at 6'43".
12:38 - Kabirov first at CP1
Title holder and winner of the previous stage, Firdaus Kabirov (Kamaz) has made it first and fastest at the first check-point(km 128). The Russian has a 3'15" lead on team mate and overall leader Vladimir Chaguin.
12:47 - Peterhansel alone at CP2
After taking off secoond this morning and overtaking Magnaldi on his way to CP1, Stephane Peterhansel carries on impressing. The Frenchman has made it alone to CP2 (m 235) well ahead of his closest rivals.
12:58 - Peter fastest at CP2
With three cars so far at CP2 (km 235), Stephane Peterhansel has the fastest time so far. The title holder has a 4'42" lead on team mate Luc Alphand and 13'36" on Thierry Magnaldi.
13:00 - Esteve crashes
Spaniard Isidre Esteve suffered a crash at km 316 of the special. The KTM-Gauloises rider is OK and has spoken to race head-quarters thanks to the Iritrack alarm system.
13:17 - Kleinschmidt third fastest at CP2
At km 235, Jutta Kleinschmidt has clocked the third best time so far, but remains 6'12" adrift. Volkswagen team mate Giniel De Villiers who was third fastest at CP1 is now well behind, 20'07" adrift.
13:53 - Peter punctures
At km 315 Stephane Peterhansel (Mitsubishi) suffered a puncture and was forced to stop.
14:42 - Despres fastest at CP3
At the third and final check point of the day (km 458), Cyril Despres has clocked the fastest time. The Frenchman has a 3' lead on overall leader Marc Coma. Third is Helder Rodrigues, 10'40" adrift.
14:49 - Sainz third fastest at CP2
At CP2 (km 235), Carlos Sainz has clocked the third fastest time, 5'17" slower then Peterhansel.
15:03 - Death of Andy Caldecott
The organisers of the 28th edition of the Dakar have learnt today, Monday the 9th of January 2006, the death of KTM rider n10 Andy Caldecott.
At km 250 of stage 9 between Nouakchott and Kiffa, on a fast portion, the Australian biker suffered a bad crash. and died.
Aware of the accident at 11:31AM, the rally headquarters immediately sent a medical helicopter that landed at 11:55 AM on the scene of the accident. The doctors unfortunately could only note the death of the biker that according to them struck immediately.
Andy Caldecott, 41 years of age, was competing in his third Dakar. He had finished 6th of the 2005 edition and was currently 10th overall of this edition after having won stage 5 between Nador and Er-Rachidia in Morocco.
To his family that was immediately contacted, the Dakar wishes to express its sincere condolences.
15:34 - Peterhansel fastest at CP3
At the third and final CP (km 458), Stephane still has the fastest time. The Mitsubishi driver increases his lead on team mate Luc Alphand: 3'38" adrift. Three cars have made it so far to CP3, Thiery Magnaldi (SCH) is 12'56" adrift.
15:39 - Kabirov fastest at CP2
In the truck race, Firdaus Kabirov has set the fastest time at CP2 (km 235). The title holder has a 2' lead on Kamaz team mate Vladimir Chagin.
16:08 - Esteve injured
After suffering two crashes, the second at km 346, Spaniard Isidre Esteve has been taken by helicopter to a closeby medical center. The Spaniard appears to be injured but his days are not in danger.
16:16 - Kabirov crashes
At km 340, title holder Firdaus Kabirov suffered a serious crash. The Russian crew is fine but is waiting for an assistance vehicle.
16:35 - Sainz now fastest at CP3
After taking off in 82nd position this morning, Carlos Sainz has just managed the best time at the third CP (km 458). The Spaniard has a 30" lead on Peterhansel and 4'08" on Alphand.
17:25 - Despres wins special
Frenchman Cyril Despres captured his second success of this 28th edition of the Dakar. The title holder clocked the fastest time of stage 9 between Nouakchott and Kiffa. Despres beat Marc Coma by 4'07". Third was Portugal's Helder Rodrigues 7' adrift.
17:27 - Coma keeps overall lead
Spaniard Marc Coma kept the overall lead of the bike race after stage 9 but sees Cyril Despres move close. Coma now has a 22'47" lead on the Frenchman. Third is Italy's Giovanni Sala at 53'04".
18:49 - Three cars at the finish line
Stephane Peterhansel, Luc Alphand and Giniel De Villiers were the first to cross the finish liine of the special. " Peter " finished with an 8'44'' advance from his team mate Alphand and 28' ahead of De Villiers. The best time at CP2 was set by Carlos Sainz, 30'' better than Peterhansel.
19:05 - Peter fastest so far on finish line
Stephane Peterhansel has clocked the fastest time so far on the finish line of the day's 599km special. The Frenchman has a 8'44" lead on Mitsubishi team mate Luc Alphand and 28' on Giniel De Villiers.
19:29 - Carlos Sainz stopped
Carlos Sainz, who set the best time as of CP3, is currently stopped less than 30 kilometres from the finish of the stage. Stephane Peterhansel should logically take the 51st stage victory of his career, and own the record for stage successes.
20:07 - Stage win for Peterhansel
Stephane Peterhansel scored his 51st career stage win on the Dakar at Kiffa. The two-time defending champion won 33 stages in the bike division, his win this afternoon was his 18th in the car division. He is now the owner outright for most stage wins, which he had shared until today with Ari Vatanen. In the overall standings, " Peter " stretched his lead from Luc Alphand to 9'16''.
21:08 - Tchaguine has finished the stage
Vladimir Chagin is the lone competitor in the truck division to have finished the stage. No other truck is in position to post the best time, he thus has won his seventh stage on the 2006 Dakar.
22:36 - No special for the bikers tomorrow
The stage planned on January the 10th between Kiffa and Kayes will be covered in liaison from start to finish for the bike race.
Indeed, the organisers, the teams, the bikers and the bike race officials that gathered together after the day's stage have decided to neutralise stage 10 as a tribute to Andy Caldecott who passed away today during the special that was covered between Nouakchott and Kiffa.
The stage will however take place normally for the cars and trucks.