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Dakar 2024: Loeb a close second as Dakar heats up

Dakar 2024: Loeb a close second as Dakar heats up

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Sébastien Loeb and Fabian Lurquin bounced back in style today on the Dakar to finish second just 29 seconds off the stage victory following nearly four hours of rugged running through more of the hardest Dakar terrain so far in this fifth edition of the rally in Saudi Arabia. Starting 18th off the line following yesterday’s stage result, the pair upped the pace in their Prodrive Hunter to now be third overall after two of 14 stages set for 2024.
The stage comprised of, as always, a bit of everything with fast sections that saw the cars hit their max speed of 170kph, some big dunes for a short section of 30kms but that gave no time for sightseeing as they passed the palace built by the founder of Saudi Arabia, Ibn Saud.
As always though, the organisers put in hundreds of waypoints for each competitor to reach with even the best in the world having to check their pace now and again to reach them and not incur any penalties. Loeb and Lurquin had a couple of moments such as this where they had to check and re-check their position, but Lurquin made sure of the route before continuing in the Hunter.
Technically there were no problems for the Hunter across the 462 kilometres today as the car tackles its fourth Dakar, however the Prodrive technicians and engineers are continuously evolving the Hunter to where it can be stronger and faster on rally raids with new ideas always coming to the fore
The bivouac tonight is at Al Duwadimi that was scheduled to be a stop 12 months ago but was ironically underwater after torrential rain hit the rally. Tomorrow is not only a big day on the stage with 440 kilometres, but the service area too will be a battle of the teams as there will be just two hours of service time before a parc ferme tomorrow night in Al Salamiya.

Sébastien Loeb - BRX : “It was a good stage for us at nearly 470kms so we tried to push hard over the whole stage. There was a moment when we weren’t quite right on the navigation but Fabian got it right and we returned to the route quickly to be on track. It was not easy, but overall it was a nice stage to drive.”

Gus Beteli, BRX Team Principal: “A much better day today. Starting a little further back helped a little with navigation but then there’s some dust to contend with too so finishing in second place and taking much of the deficit back from yesterday is an amazing achievement. With ten days to go we need to keep this up to push higher and higher in the overall rankings.”

Stage 2 Result
Al Henakiyah - Al Duwadimi, 462kms
2nd Loeb/Lurquin Bahrain Raid Xtreme Prodrive Hunter

Overall Standings
3rd Loeb/Lurquin Bahrain Raid Xtreme Prodrive Hunter +4m17s

Source Bahrain Raid Xtreme

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