LA RIOJA, Argentina (January 13, 2016) – Robby Gordon continued to improve positions at the 38th Dakar Rally Wednesday, bringing his Traxxas/Toyo Tires HST Gordini Supercar home in fifteenth-place of the weather shortened 244 Km special.
As the heat of the day increased, so did Gordon’s intensity, as the twenty-sixth starter wasted no time working his way past competitors into the ninetieth position thru Km 140 with no troubles. When many of the other drivers were finding themselves stuck, over heating or experiencing navigational issues, Gordon and navigator Kellon Walch pressed thru in the Toyo Tires/TRAXXAS Gordini all the way up to the seventieth position by Km 180.
Knowing the stage was being cut short 34 Km, Gordon would set a consistent pace the last 30 Km with no mistakes to finish the Stage in 4 hours, 51 minutes, 28 seconds.
Gordon’s recorded time would be logged as the fifteenth quickest of the day only 52 minutes, 56 second behind the leaders.
Despite Gordon’s trouble-free free run, the tenth stage was topped by two Frenchman. As Stephan Peterhansel picked up his third win of 2016, winning the shortened Stage in a time of 3 hours, 58 minutes, 22 seconds, he was followed in second by fellow countryman and teammate Cyril Despres with a time of 4 hours, 4 minutes, 12 seconds. Claiming his first podium of the 2016 Rally, Vladimir Vasilyev of Russia completed the stage in 4 hours, 11 minutes, and 28 seconds to finish third, while Spaniard Nani Roma was credited with fourth with a time of 4 hours, 13 minutes, 5 seconds. Three-time Stage winner Sebastien Loeb would re-group after his Stage eight crash to round out the top five with a time of 4 hours, 16 minutes, and 12 seconds.
After ten stages of the 2016 Dakar Rally, Peterhansel has moved back into the overall lead opening up a gap 1 hour ahead of second place Qatar driver Nasser Al-Attiyah. South African Ginel De Villers would claim the third position 1 hour, 12 minutes, 31 seconds back, followed by Mikko Hirvonen of Finland in the fourth position 1 hour, 23 minutes, 51 seconds back. LeeRoy Poulter slides back into the top five 1 hour, 33 minutes, 58 seconds behind.
Robby Gordon’s fifteenth place finish today would move him up into the twenty-eighth position in the overall standings 10 hours, 24 minutes, and 22 seconds behind the winning pace of Peterhansel.
The level of difficulty for Thursday’s Stage 11 will remain the same as the last few days, as Gordon and the HST Gordini will tackle different varieties of terrain throughout the special, including the famous fesh-fesh of Argentina. Fesh-Fesh, a heavy form of sand will test the patience of Gordon and navigator Kellon Walch as they try to navigate that section without getting stuck. Other portions of the special will feature quick straight gravel sections that are more suited for cars that are set-up to excel on the WRC style course, the HST Gordni being one look for Gordon to cut more time off the overall deficit today.
Follow the quest for an American finish in the 2016 Dakar Rally for Team SPEED through live timing and scoring as well as live updates with chat at http://www.planetrobby.com and http://www.StadiumSuperTrucks.com
NBC Sports Network (NBCSN) will provide daily highlights after each stage of the 2016 Dakar Rally at 5:30 p.m. ET. Check your local listings for exact time and channel for availability.
Photos from Stage 10 can be downloaded from the following link:
Team SPEED is supported by the following partners; SPEED Energy, Toyo Tires, TRAXXAS, KMC Wheels, Arctic Cat, 4 Wheel Parts, Grand Design Recreational Vehicles, Magnaflow Exhaust, Eibach Springs, King Shocks, Outlaw LED, Mastercraft Safety, Holley Performance, Embee Performance, MAC Tools, DeWALT, Freightliner Trucks, Replay XD, Valvoline, Impact by Mastercraft Safety, Lincoln Electric, Torchmate by Lincoln Electric, Ron Davis Racing Products, Techni Waterjet, Mechanix Wear, Saftey-Kleen, Weddle Industries, and Loctite.
Stage 11: La Rioja – San Juan
Special Section: 431 km
Total: 712 km
The level of difficulty remains the same, but variety will favor the most flexible of drivers and teams. Sand in all its forms will feature, particularly fesh-fesh, the most volatile and heavy kind, which demands both dexterity and patience. But speed will also be an advantage in other, straighter sections, featuring gravel and pebbles. Opportunities will be few and far between, but there is still time to shake up the standings, since the terrain will be favorable to creating significant gaps.