AREQUIPA, Peru – Red Bull privateer and nine-time World Rally Championship titlist Sebastien Loeb took down Friday’s win in the fifth stage of the Dakar Rally, the longest stage of the event so far at 519 kilometers.
Loeb completed the stage in four hours, 56 minutes and 34 seconds, outpacing stage runner-up and overall leader Nasser Al-Attiyah by just over 10 minutes for the victory.
“It was a very good day for me. We pushed really hard from the start to the end of the stage, with no mistakes, no punctures, nothing,” said Loeb. “We had a perfect day. We’ll see where we are [in the standings]. The road-book was correct today, so we didn’t make any mistakes and it was good.”
Stephane Peterhansel remains second in the overall standings, while Loeb’s Friday performance moved him up to fifth, 40 minutes out of the overall lead.
Red Bull KTM’s Sam Sunderland rode to the stage five win in the bike class, completing the run in four hours, 11 minutes and 48 seconds and beating Yamaha’s Xavier de Soultrait by more than three minutes.
Sunderland’s Friday effort pulled him to within one minute of Monster Energy Honda’s Ricky Brabec for the overall top spot in the class.
The quad class saw Nicolas Cavigliasso extend his overall lead with another stage victory, while Eduard Nikolaev did the same with a stage win in the truck class.