Dakar 2021 stage 8 – Nasser Al-Attiyah had a great day with success, bringing his total stage and prologue victories to 40 since his first participation in 2004.
Ancient canyons, cliffs and brown-rock mountains made for an especially photogenic second half of Monday’s Dakar Stage 8, a 375km/233-mile southwesterly romp from yesterday’s finish line in Sakaka to the Red Sea coastal city of Neom.
After nearly three hours on course, Toyota Gazoo Racing’s Nasser Al-Attiyah headed home Carlos Sainz by just 52 seconds, with Sainz’ X-Raid MINI JCW teammate Stephane Peterhansel a further 2m11s back in third. By winning, Al-Attiyah kept the points pressure on Peterhansel, trailing the latter now in the general standings by just 4m50s.
STANDINGS AFTER STAGE 8
|7||Khalid Al Qassimi||Peugeot||2hr45m33s|
|9||Giniel de Villiers||Toyota||3hr26m50s|
Interestingly, in 2007, Nasser Al-Attiyah was perceived as risk-taker when he won his first special in Nema behind the wheel of an X-Raid Team BMW. Since then, there has not been a single Dakar where he has not tasted victory on at least one stage, a feat which no other driver has achieved over 14 consecutive editions in the history of the rally.
In collecting the 40th stage victory of his career, Al-Attiyah is now third on the roll of honor for stage wins, with Stephane Peterhansel (47) and Ari Vatanen (50) in his sights.
Another tough stage from beginning to end, the opening miles featured several sharp stony sections which marked the end of veteran Sebastien Loeb’s 2021 run: Puncturing just 26 miles in, Leob suffered another flat just 25 miles further along; when the assistance vehicle flatted a tire on its run to the rescue, the team declared a DNF…
DAKAR 2021 STAGE 8 – NASSER AL-ATTIYAH CLOSED THE GAP TO PETERHANSEL DAKAR 2021 STAGE 8 – NASSER AL-ATTIYAH CLOSED THE GAP TO PETERHANSEL