After an impressive first stage in this year’s Dakar Rally, MINI teams have posted results in the second stage as well, as they progress through the Peruvian landscape. The second stage took the teams from Pisco to San Juan de Marcona and four MINI crews managed to complete it in the top ten, with Nani Roma claiming the second place, Yazeed Al-Rajhi coming in fifth, Cyril Despres sixth and Carlos Sainz coming in eight.
The second stage was quite different from the inaugural one too, as the course saw the teams covering a combination of 211 km liaison route and a tough 342 km Special Stage. The results were quite different too, basically having Carlos Sainz and Nani Roma switching places. Nani and co-driver Alex Haro had a virtually fault-free race and came in second, a great performance from the Spanish duo. Just 1 minute and 13 seconds later, Yazeed Al-Rajhi and Timo Gottschalk in another MINI John Cooper Works Rally car crossed the finish line.
The French duo of Cyril Despres and Jean Paul Cottret was the third MINI crew to complete Stage 2. They placed their MINI John Cooper Works Buggy in sixth, while eighth position was taken by the Spanish pairing of Carlos Sainz and Lucas Cruz, also from X-raid MINI John Cooper Works Team. What’s most impressive though is that Despres achieved that even though him and his co-pilot stopped to pull Stephane Peterhansel who was stuck in the dunes, showing exactly what makes the Dakar Rally such an interesting event.
Unfortunately, the MINI JCW buggy driven by Peterhansel and David Castera lost some 17 minutes being stuck in sand and that means they finished on the 13th place. Nevertheless, it could’ve been worse as Orlando Terranova learned, having to call it quits during the second stage as he needed medical assistance for back pain. Here’s to hoping everything’s OK for today’s third stage from San Juan de Marcona to Arequipa.