Dakar Stage 6 Highlights: Sainz, Brabec extend leads

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The completion of the sixth stage of the Dakar Rally marks the halfway point of the event, and the competitors now head into a day of rest before stage seven begins on Sunday.

Here are some of today’s highlights:

In the cars class, Carlos Sainz continued to build on his advantage over Nasser Al-Attiyah, while Stephane Peterhansel won his second stage of the rally. Sainz and Al-Attiyah, finished second and third, 1:33 and 3:22 behind, respectfully.

Fernando Alonso ran within the top five for the majority of the stage, however, the two-time Formula One champion eventually fell short to Mathieu Serradori with 50 kilometers remaining and finished sixth overall.

Overall: Carlos Sainz holds an advantage of 7:48 over Nasser Al-Attiyah.

In bikes, Jose Ignacio Cornejo and Kevin Benavides showed speed early on, but overall leader Ricky Brabec took the lead just past the 200 km point and held on to won his second stage.

Brabec defeated Joan Barreda Bort by a margin of 1:34, while Matthias Walkner finished third, 2:45 behind. 

Overall: Ricky Brabec holds an advantage of 20:56 over Pablo Quintanilla.

In side by sides, Gerard Farres Guell finished first, but was assessed a two-minute penalty that bumped him him down to second in the rankings, 0:38 behind overall leader Francisco Lopez Contardo. Reinaldo Varela finished third, 3:37 back.

Overall: Francisco Lopez Contardo holds an advantage of 9:48 over Casey Currie.

In quads, Simon Viste dominated, winning by 3:25 over Ignacio Casale. Alexandre Giroud finished third, 3:36 behind.

Stage 3 winner Giovanni Enrico retired when his quad experienced mechanical issues 210 kilometers in, while Romain Dutu, who was fastest in the previous stage, crashed out early. 

Overall: Ignacio Casale holds an advantage of 38:14 over Simon Viste.

In trucks, overall leader Andrey Karginov extended his lead by nearly four and a half minutes by winning his second stage.

Karginov defeated Kamaz teammate Anton Shibalov by 4:21. Siarhei Viazovich finished third, 12:32 back.

Overall: Andrey Karginov holds an advantage of 19:14 over Anton Shibalov.

Stage Wins:

Cars: [2] Carlos Sainz (Stage 3 and 5), [2] Stephane Peterhansel (Stage 4 and 6), [1] Vaidotas Zala (Stage 1) and [1] Giniel De Villiers (Stage 2)

Bikes: [2] Toby Price (Stage 1 and 5), [2] Ricky Brabec (Stage 3 and 6), [1] Ross Branch (Stage 2) and [1] Jose Ingacio Cornejo (Stage 4)

Side-by-sides: [2] Gerard Farres Guell (Stage 3 and 6), [1]  Aron Domzala (Stage 1), [1] Francisco Lopez Contardo (Stage 2), [1] Mitchell Guthrie (Stage 4) and [1] Cyril Despres (Stage 5)

Quads: [3] Ignacio Casale (Stage 1, 2, and 4), [1] Giovanni Enrico (Stage 3), [1] Romain Dutu (Stage 5) and [1] Simon Viste (Stage 6)

Trucks: [2] Anton Shibalov (Stage 1 and 4), [2] Andrey Karginov (Stage 3 and 6), [1] Siarhei Viazovich (Stage 2) and [1] Dmitry Sotnikov (Stage 5)

Highlights of Stage 6 will air on NBCSN tonight at 9:30 p.m. ET.  The rally runs through Jan. 17.

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IndyCar teams with NASCAR on IMS road course doubleheader in 2021

IndyCar NASCAR doubleheader 2021
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The NTT IndyCar Series will be sharing Indianapolis Motor Speedway with the NASCAR Cup Series in a race weekend doubleheader for the second consecutive season, but both series will be on the road course in August 2021.

IMS announced Wednesday that IndyCar will hold an Aug. 14, 2021 race on its 14-turn, 2.439-mile road course. It’ll be a day before NASCAR’s premier series runs the same layout for the first time after the Brickyard 400 was contested on the 2.5-mile oval for the first time in 27 years.

This season’s rescheduling of the IndyCar GMR Grand Prix to July 4, 2019 (a day before the Brickyard 400) led to the first NASCAR-IndyCar doubleheader weekend. The Xfinity Series also raced on the IMS road course for the first time July 4 after the IndyCar race ended.

INDYCAR AT IMS THIS WEEKEND: Harvest GP schedule, entry lists

IndyCar will be holding its second race weekend this year at the IMS road course Friday and Saturday with the Harvest GP.

“Our first NASCAR-INDYCAR weekend was a big success last July, with positive feedback from
our loyal fans who watched the races on NBC and from the drivers, teams and participants
involved,” IMS president Douglas Boles said in a statement. “The Xfinity Series’ debut on the IMS road course provided exactly the kind of thrilling action from the green to checkered flags that we anticipated, so we know the teams and drivers of the Cup Series will put on a great show as they turn left and right for the first time at IMS.

“We can’t wait to welcome back fans to see NASCAR and INDYCAR together during this
exciting weekend as we add another memorable chapter in the long, storied history of the
Indianapolis Motor Speedway.”

It also will mark the first NASCAR Cup-IndyCar doubleheader with a crowd as fans weren’t permitted at IMS in July because of the novel coronvavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Over the course of Wednesday, NASCAR is releasing its 36-race slate for next season. IndyCar has yet to release its full 2021 schedule.