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The penultimate stage of the 2018 Dakar Rally was a 907km stage with a timed section of 424km. After an unexpected break due to the cancellation of stage 12, riders headed from San Juan to Cordoba. The rally will reach its climax in Cordoba with the final stage.
Hero MotoSports Team Rally rider CS Santosh is determined to finish the rally on a high note. The Indian rider rode with a purpose to improve his ranking and finished the 13th stage in 33rd position. This result has propelled Santosh to 34th position in the overall standings.
Santosh's teammate, Dakar rookie, Oriol Mena was on a charge in the penultimate stage. The Spanish rider posted eight fastest time in the 13th stage and is placed in an impressive eight spot in the general rankings. With just one stage to go, Mena is expected to go for the last push to register his best-ever result in his maiden Dakar Rally.
Sherco TVS rider Juan Pedrero Garcia was on attack mode in the 13th stage and recorded his best stage finish by posting fifth fastest time, just 15 minutes adrift the stage winner. With this result, Garcia has moved up to 11th position in the overall leaderboard. We can expect the TVS rider to go for the last push to finish the rally inside the top ten position.
In the motorcycle category, KTM rider Toby Price took his second consecutive stage victory in the penultimate stage of the rally. Matthias Walkner leads the rally with over 20 minutes ahead of Honda rider Kevin Benavides. Stage winner Price is in the third position in the overall rankings.
In the quads class, the penultimate stage victory went to Jeremias Gonzalez Ferioli. Ignacio Casale holds a comfortable lead of over 30 minutes ahead of Nicolas Cavigliasso. The fastest rider in the 13th stage, Ferioli rounded off the top three riders after the completion of stage 13.
In the cars category, Qatari driver Nasser Al-Attiyah posted the fastest time in the penultimate stage and moved into the second position in the overall standings. Carlos Sainz is on course for the rally victory with a commanding lead. But Peugeot driver Stephane Peterhansel suffered a crash and damaged his steering and lost a lot of time. He managed to finish the day in the fourth spot in the general ranking.
In the trucks category, Russian driver Eduard Nikolaev took the stage win and stormed into the rally lead with the exit of local hero Federico Villagra. The Kamaz driver now holds a lead of over three hours and all he needs to do is just finish the final stage of the rally. Siarhei Viazovich in his Maz truck is on course for a second place finish in the 2018 Dakar Rally.
Dakar 2018 Stage 13 Results
Toby Price (AUS) KTM
Kevin Benavides (ARG) Honda
Antoine Meo (FRA) KTM
Jeremias Gonzalez Ferioli (ARG) Yamaha
Nelson Augusto Sanabria Galeano (PRY) Yamaha
Ignacio Casale (CHL) Yamaha
Nasser Al-attiyah (QAT) Toyota
Lucio Alvarez (ARG) Toyota
Giniel De Villiers (ZAF) Toyota
Eduard Nikolaev (RUS) Kamaz
Airat Mardeev (RUS) Kamaz
Martin Kolomy (CZE) Tatra
The penultimate stage of the 2018 Dakar Rally was a challenging one for the riders as all the competitors were pushing for the best results. CS Santosh maintained his consistent pace and is on course to finish the rally inside top 40 positions. We expect him to play it safe on the final stage of the rally and any improvement in the overall ranking will be a bonus.