Dakar: Nani Roma more than six hours behind following Stage 1 breakdown

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After an ill-fated opening stage, defending Dakar Rally champion Nani Roma will be racing just for pride over the next two weeks.

Mechanical problems with his No. 300 Mini All4 machine in the opening kilometers of Sunday’s Stage 1 from Buenos Aires to Villa Carlos Paz, Argentina ruined his afternoon early on.

His assistance truck had to tow him the remainder of the 175km stage, and Roma was forced to stop again while heading toward the second checkpoint.

He eventually got going again but he passed the second checkpoint down 4 hours and 40 minutes to Al-Attiyah. Reduced speeds caused the gap to widen even further, and heading into Stage 2 tomorrow, Roma will be facing a surely insurmountable deficit of six hours, 26 minutes.

Al-Attiyah and today’s runner-up, Orlando Terranova, will now be counted on to lead the charge for Mini, which seeks its fourth consecutive win in the Dakar.

Coverage of the 2015 Dakar Rally starts Monday afternoon on NBCSN. Get your full Dakar TV schedule here.

Juncos Racing to field single car entry in Indy 500

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Part-time NTT IndyCar Series entrant Juncos Racing will announce their attempt to qualify for the 2019 Indianapolis 500 within the next few weeks, according to RACER.

The team, which made its Indy 500 debut in 2017, ran 12 of the 17 IndyCar Series races last season, but has only made a start in one of the four events so far in 2019, finishing 18th in the inaugural running of the IndyCar Classic at Circuit of the Americas with Kyle Kaiser behind the wheel.

Though no driver has yet to be announced for the single-car entry, Kaiser is expected to be the leading candidate for the ride. The 23-year-old Californian has raced for the team since 2014, where he won the 2017 Indy Lights championship.

One of the top teams in the Road to Indy ladder system, Juncos Racing has over 50 wins between Indy Lights and Indy Pro 2000 competition. The team’s most recent victory came in the second Indy Lights race at St. Petersburg this year with Rinus VeeKay behind the wheel.

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