Stephane Peterhansel (Photo by FRANCK FIFE / AFP)
Audi veteran Stephane Peterhansel left his rivals trailing in the dust on stage two in a treacherous 463km race.
Only nine-time rally world champion Sebastien Loeb got anywhere near Peterhansel at 29sec as American rookie Seth Quintero came home third at 3min 11sec.
The 58-year-old Peterhansel scooped his 50th Dakar Rally stage win to become joint record holder with Ari Vatanen.
“I stopped counting a long time ago, but it’s good to know I can still beat him,” Peterhansel said.
But the result leaves Audi’s Carlos Sainz in the overall lead at 8hr 49min 38sec with a lead of 1min 51sec on Saudi Arabian Yazeed Al Rajhi who came fifth Sunday, while Loeb sits third at 4min 17sec.
Defending champion Nasser Al-Attiyah was fourth on the day at 6min 28.
In the motorbike section Honda’s Ignacio Cornejo took the win with a lead of 5min 59sec ahead of Luciano Benavides while Botswana’s Ross Branch remains in the overall lead.
Monday’s 438km run from Al-Duwamsimi to Al-Salamiya features changing terrain from dunes to jagged rocky sections.
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