Red Bull driver Carlos Sainz has fallen to 10th in the Dakar Rally standings after organisers cancelled their decision to award him time back on Sunday’s stage.
The Spaniard had lost 21 minutes to the leaders on stage two following navigation problems and had to double back. However, when his team stated that the incident was caused by problems with the rally’s own satellites rather than the GPS fitted to Sainz’s car, organisers decided to cancel his delay of 21m26s and put him back in the rally lead.
The decision was however reversed on Monday night when further investigations showed that the Buggy’s secondary GPS was functional and could have been used by Sainz and his co-driver Timo Gottschalk.
“The race management took its decision on 6th January 2013 further to a claim from competitor #303 on the basis of partial technical analysis proving that the main GPS experienced malfunctions,” read the statement from the organisers. “Comprehensive and more detailed analysis, based on the final report made by ERTF, in fact revealed that the second GPS was functioning correctly,” the statement added.
Since Sainz has also lost 20 minutes due to electrical problems on Monday, he is now down to 10th place overall. The Dakar Rally is currently led by last year’s winner Stephane Peterhansel on the X-Raid Mini Countryman.
Positions after stage three/Cars:
1. Stephane Peterhansel X-raid Mini 5h34m26s
2. Nasser Al-Attiyah Red Bull Buggy + 6m33s
3. Lucio Alvarez Overdrive Toyota + 18m11s
4. Leonid Novitskiy X-raid Mini + 21m10s
5. Carlos Sainz Red Bull Buggy + 21m16s
6. Giniel de Villiers Imperial Toyota + 30m22s
7. Nani Roma X-raid Mini + 32m56s
8. Orlando Terranova X-raid BMW + 35m13s
9. Bernard Errandonea SMG Buggy + 38m32s
10. Ronan Chabot SMG Buggy + 39m40s