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Stephane Peterhansel rebounds with stage win at Dakar Rally

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Stephane Peterhansel captured the eighth stage Sunday of the Dakar Rally, rebounding from a crash a day earlier that knocked him from the overall lead.

The defending champion now is ranked third overall behind Carlos Sainz, who finished fifth in Sunday’s 498-kilometer stage that ended in Tupiza, Bolivia. Cyril Despres, Peterhansel’s Peugeot teammate, placed second in the stage, 49 seconds behind Peterhansel.

Nasser Al-Attiyah was third in the stage and remains second overall, trailing Sainz by 1 hour and 6 minutes.

Antoine Meo (motorcycles), Dmitry Sotnikov (truck) Simon Vitse (quads) and Reinaldo Varela (SxS) were the other stage winners Sunday.

Because of inclement weather, Monday’s ninth stage between Tupiza and the city of Salta in Argentina was canceled by organizers. “There is a risk of floods and storms,” said race director Marc Coma.

Southern Bolivia has been hit by heavy rain over the last few days and Dakar Rally’s camp in Tupiza was flooded as well.

The rally is expected to resume Tuesday with the 10th stage between Salta and Belen in Argentina.

MORE: Dakar Rally daily stages schedule, NBCSN broadcast schedule, list of all competitors.

MORE: Stage 7 wrapup

MORE: Stage 6 wrapup

MORE: Stage 5 wrapup

MORE: Stage 4 wrapup

MORE: Stage 3 wrapup

MORE: Stage 2 wrapup

MORE: Stage 1 wrapup



  1. France’s Stephane Peterhansel,Peugeot 5:15:18
  2. France’s Cyril Despres, Peugeot, 5:16:07
  3. Qatar’s Nasser Al-Attiyah, Toyota, 5:17:30
  4. The Netherlands’ Bernhard ten Brinke, Toyota, 5:20:18
  5. Spain’s Carlos Sainz, Peugeot, 05:22:22


  1. Spain’s Carlos Sainz
  2. Qatar’s Nasser Al-Attiyah, 1:06:37 behind
  3. France’s Stephane Peterhansel, 1:13:42
  4. The Netherlands’ Bernhard ten Brinke – 1:23
  5. South Africa’s Giniel de Villiers – 1:37:09



  1. France’s Antoine Meo, KTM, 5:24:01
  2. United States’ Ricky Brabec, Honda, 5:25:09
  3. Australia’s Toby Price, KTM, 5:26:46
  4. Argentina’s Kevin Benavides, Honda, 5:29:53
  5. Slovakia’s Stefan Svitko, KTM, 5:30:47


17th: Shane Esposito (KTM), 5:44:22

18th: Andrew Short (Husqvarna), 5:46:29

21st: Mark Samuels (Honda), 5:49:29

63rd: Bill Conger (Husqvarna), 7:22:56


  1. France’s Adrien van Beveren
  2. Argentina’s Kevin Benevides – 0:22 behind
  3. Austria’s Matthias Walkner – 6:34
  4. Australia’s Toby Price – 7:35
  5. Spain’s Joan Barreda Bort – 8:01



  1. Russia’s Dmitry Sotnikov, Kamaz, 4:23:32
  2. Argentina’s Federico Villagra, Iveco, 4:28:43
  3. Russia’s Airat Mardeev, Kamaz, 4:03:00
  4. Russia’s Eduard Nikolaev, Kamaz, 4:32:05
  5. Czech Republic’s Martin Kolomy, Tatra, 4:35:05


  1. Russia’s Eduard Nikolaev
  2. Argentina’s Federico Villagra – 46:25 behind
  3. Czech Republic’s Martin Macik – 3:29:25
  4. Belarus’s Siarhei Vlazovich – 3:59:35
  5. Russia’s Airat Mardeev – 4:23:20



  1. France’s Simon Vitse, 6:52:32
  2. Brazil’s Marcelo Medeiros, 6:55:59
  3. Chile’s Ignacia Casale, 6:57:52
  4. France’s Axel Dutrie, 7:03:04
  5. Argentina’s Jeremias Gonzalez Ferioli, 7:14:59


  1. Chile’s Ignacio Casale
  2. Argentina’s Jeremias Gonzalez Ferioli – 1:45:20 behind
  3. Argentina’s Nicolas Cavigliasso – 1:49:19
  4. France’s Alex Dutrie – 2:56:19
  5. France’s Simon Vitse – 3:07:44



  1. Brazil’s Reinaldo Varela, Can-Am, 7:30:18
  2. Peru’s Juan Carlos Uribe Ramos, Can-Am, 7:49:13
  3. Argentina’s Leo Larrauri, Can-Am, 8:18:27
  4. France’s Patricie Garroueste, Polaris, 8:19:00
  5. France’s Claude Fournier, Polaris, 9:14:41


  1. Brazil’s Reinaldo Varela
  2. Peru’s Juan Uribe Ramos – 1:34:31 behind
  3. France’s Patricie Garroueste – 2:32:27
  4. Peru’s Anibal Aliaga, 7:25:08
  5. France’s Claude Fournier, 7:39:23

Marco Andretti confident that fewer tests won’t hurt Andretti Autosport

Photo: IndyCar
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A small point of debate around the 2018 aero kit has been the manufacturer test days that took place through the Fall of 2017 and into the beginning of 2018. Chiefly, the debate has centered around teams who hadn’t participated in those manufacturer test days and if they’re starting the 2018 Verizon IndyCar Series season at a disadvantage as a result.

Team Penske, Ed Carpenter Racing, and A.J. Foyt Racing completed test days for Chevrolet, with Schmidt Peterson Motorsports and Chip Ganassi Racing doing so for Honda.

That left teams like Andretti Autosport out of the mix, with some voicing concerns as a result.

However, in a press conference during testing at ISM Raceway last weekend, Marco Andretti explained that he thinks Andretti Autosport should be able to catch up on development, citing the team’s resources – they’re the only IndyCar team with four full-time cars in their stable – and the fact that everyone is still adapting to the new kit.

“I feel like it’s early enough days that, yes, we can catch up,” Andretti said at ISM Raceway. “When there is anything new, a new car, new aero kit, at-track days are huge. We can sim all these things we want. To really get out there and confirm what we’re learning back at the shop is another thing.”

Ryan Hunter-Reay during testing at ISM Raceway. Photo: IndyCar

Andretti continued, “Yeah, I don’t think we should look at it like we’re behind the eight ball. With a four-car team, that’s where we can use it to our benefit. So far so good.”

Teammate Ryan Hunter-Reay, echoed Andretti’s sentiments, adding that while the situation is not perfect, they will need to adapt to it in order to remain competitive.

“Any time you have a new car, to put it into perspective, we’re on track three days on a road course before we get to (the season open in St. Petersburg). That’s a very short amount of time. It’s obviously not ideal, but we’re just going to lace up our boots and get on with it. That’s all you can do.”

Andretti Autosport will have one more team test, at Sebring International Raceway later on in February, before the season-opening Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg.