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Todt re-elected as FIA president for third and final term

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Jean Todt will continue in the role of FIA president until the end of 2021 after being re-elected by the governing body’s General Assembly in Paris on Friday.

Todt took up the role of FIA president in 2009, and confirmed earlier this year he would seek a third term, with no other candidates coming forward to oppose him.

Despite running unopposed, Todt nevertheless required confirmation from the FIA General Assembly, which arrived at its final meeting of the year in Paris on Friday.

“It is gratifying to have such universal support. I would like to thank all of the Member Clubs of the FIA for their support,” Todt said.

“I see this as a validation of the direction the FIA has taken under my leadership, and as encouragement to continue the programme we have pursued over the past eight years.”

Todt has confirmed he intends for his third term to be his final one, running for another four years to the end of 2021.

In his acceptance speech, Todt confirmed plans to focus on three main areas for his final term: innovation, advocacy and the development of a strong network of mobility and sport clubs.

“From time to time there are some who challenge this role, and I remind them that Motor Sport will always need a regulator, it will always need fair play, it will always require ethics, and it will always need an independent referee,” Todt said.

“This is the vital role the FIA plays and one it will continue to play in the future. Innovation is essential if the FIA is to continue to improve and take its rightful place in the world as the leader in Mobility and Motorsport development. To encourage this, we propose to establish an FIA Innovation Fund.”

The FIA also confirmed a reshuffling of its senior management under Todt in a statement issued on Friday.

“After eight years as President of the FIA Senate, the body with oversight of the management and finances of the Federation, America’s Nick Craw steps down from the role,” the statement reads.

“Mr. Craw will be replaced by New Zealand’s Brian Gibbons, who has acted as FIA Deputy President for Mobility since 2009. That role will now be now be filled by Belgium’s Thierry Willemarck, who moves from his position as President of Region I of the FIA.

“Graham Stoker continues as Deputy President for Sport, a post he has held since 2009.”

“I have encouraged the selection of a leadership team that is a mixture of the experienced and the new. The experienced will ensure we continue to respect our heritage, uphold our values and avoid the pitfalls of the past,” Todt said.

“The new faces will bring fresh, innovative thinking to our Federation. I am particularly pleased that a number of talented women have been nominated for important positions by our clubs.

“It is a beginning I hope will lead the FIA to embrace greater diversity and recognize and reward talent, wherever it exists.”

Dakar Rally Stage 13: Carlos Sainz has second overall victory in sight

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Editor’s note: Check out expanded video highlights of Stage 13 Saturday at 6:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN.

Carlos Sainz is nearing his second Dakar Rally victory while Nasser Al-Attiyah strengthened his bid for second by winning Friday’s 13th stage of the endurance race.

Sainz finished sixth in his Team Peugeot ride and holds a lead of 46:18 over Al-Attiyah’s Toyota.

“I tried to play it safe, even if there were plenty of tricky parts,” said Sainz, who won the Dakar Rally in 2010 but had failed to finish the past five races because of mechanical problems. “Since the start, there has been a lot of drama in this race and it’s not over until we’ve crossed the finishing line. It’s not a crazy Dakar, but it’s very difficult. I hope everything will go OK (Saturday).”

Defending race winner Stephane Peterhansel is in fourth overall, trailing by 1:28:08 after crashing and finishing 20th in the penultimate stage. The Frenchman has a record 13 overall wins in the Dakar but is unlikely to earn another despite rebounding well from a crash in the seventh stage that had knocked him from the overall lead.

In other divisions, Eduard Nikolaev (trucks), Matthias Walkner (motorcycles), Ignacio Casale (Quads) and Reinaldo Varela (SxS UTV) are on the cusp of capturing overall wins entering the final stage.

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STAGE 13 RESULTS, CARS

  1. Qatar’s Nasser Al-Attiyah, Toyota, 5:02:22
  2. Argentina’s Lucio ALvarez, Toyota, 5:13:38
  3. South Africa’s Giniel de Villiers, Toyota: 5:15:28
  4. Poland’s Jakub Przygonski, X-Raid, 5:17:29
  5. Finland’s Mikko Hirvonen, X-Raid, 5:21:46

OVERALL 

  1. Spain’s Carlos Sainz
  2. Qatar’s Nasser Al-Attiyah, 46:18 behind
  3. South Africa’s Giniel de Villiers, 1:20:00 behind
  4. France’s Stephane Peterhansel, 1:28:08 behind
  5. Poland’s Jakub Przygonski, 2:46:32 behind

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TRUCKS

  1. Russia’s Eduard Nikolaev, Kamaz, 5:59:02
  2. Russia’s Airat Mardeev, 5:59:52
  3. Czech Republic’s Martin Kolomy, Tatra, 6:05:08
  4. Belarus’s Siarhei Vlazovich, 6:26:47
  5. Czech Republic’s Dmitry Sotnikov, 6:31:56

OVERALL 

  1. Russia’s Eduard Nikolaev
  2. Belarus’s Siarhei Vlazovich, 3:53:59 behind
  3. Russia’s Airat Mardeev, 5:21:05
  4. Czech Republic’s Martin Kolomy, 9:01:18
  5. Czech Republic’s Dmitry Sotnikov, 10:04:29

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MOTORCYCLES

  1. Australia’s Toby Price, KTM, 4:48:33
  2. Argentina’s Kevin Benavides, Honda, 4:50:36
  3. France’s Antoine Meo, KTM, 4:51:17
  4. Austria’s Matthias Walkner, KTM, 5:00:05
  5. Spain’s Juan Pedrero Garcia, 5:03:45

AMERICAN RIDERS

15th: Mark Samuels (Honda), 5:19:40

18th: Shane Esposito (KTM), 5:27:14

37th: Andrew Short (Husqvarna), 5:58:14

68th: Bill Conger (Husqvarna), 7:16:00

OVERALL 

  1. Austria’s Matthias Walkner
  2. Argentina’s Kevin Benavides, 22:31 behind
  3. Australia’s Toby Price, 27:45
  4. France’s Antoine Meo, 50:17
  5. Spain’s Gerard Farres, 1:01:19

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QUADS

  1. Argentina’s Jeremias Gonzalez Ferioli, 5:55:16
  2. Paraguay’s Nelson Augusto Sanabria Galeano, 5:58:34
  3. Chile’s Ignacio Casale, 5:59:19
  4. Argentina’s Nicolas Cavigliasso, 6:02:22
  5. Brazil’s Marcelo Medeiros, 6:02:23

OVERALL

  1. Chile’s Ignacio Casale
  2. Argentina’s Nicolas Cavigliasso, 1:37:16 behind
  3. Argentina’s Jeremias Gonzalez Ferioli, 2:05:12
  4. Brazil’s Marcelo Medeiros, 4:25:26
  5. Peru’s Alexis Hernandez, 4:34:37

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SxS UTV

  1. France’s Patricie Garrouste, Polaris, 6:29:40
  2. Brazil’s Reinaldo Varela, Can-Am, 6:39:39
  3. France’s Claude Fournier, Polaris, 7:33:17
  4. Spain’s Jose Pena Campos, Polaris, 7:41:200

OVERALL 

  1. Brazil’s Reinaldo Varela
  2. France’s Patricie Garroueste, 53:28 behind
  3. France’s Claude Fournier, 10:02:12
  4. Spain’s Jose Pena Campos, 10:06:01

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SATURDAY’S SCHEDULE

Champions in all five classes will be crowned Saturday after the 14th and final stage concludes in Cordoba, Argentina.

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