2015 Dakar Rally: MINI clinches a one-two victory at stage four // Nasser Al-Attiyah extends his lead in the overall classification


The MINI ALL4 Racing has once again proven its excellent drivability and reliability under tough conditions: Nasser AlAttiyah (QT) and his co-driver Mathieu Baumel (FR) have clinched yet another stage win at the 2015 Dakar Rally. The duo was quickest on leg four from Chilecito (AR) to Copiapo (CL), extending their lead in the overall classification to 8:15 minutes. Joan “Nani” Roma (ES) and his co-driver Michel Périn (FR) complemented the first one-two victory for MINI at this year’s Dakar. The very experienced duo, who won the Dakar Rally last year, scored an excellent second place and moved up another eleven places in the overall classification. They are currently in 44th place. Stage four was started high up in the Andes mountains at an altitude of over 3,000 metres above sea level. At the beginning the drivers had to master twisty and very challenging mountain roads before crossing the border to Chile. The following downhill ride to today’s finish line in Copiapo, which is located at an altitude of approximately 1,000 metres above sea level, turned out to be another tough challenge for all participants. On the final stretch of today’s stage the drivers had to tackle the high dunes around Copiapo. Many drivers got stuck and lost precious time. Orlando Terranova/Bernardo Graue (AR/AR) in their MINI ALL4 Racing were first car on the road today. Unfortunately they hit a stone right after the first checkpoint and lost a lot of time. However, they are still in the race. Erik van Loon/Wouter Rosegaar (NL/NL) finished in 10th place and are now in a strong 6th position overall. Krzysztof Holowczyc/Xavier Panseri (PL/FR), who finished 12th today, are also in an excellent 5th position overall.
On Thursday the Dakar will face another tough adventure. The drivers have to cut across the Atacama Desert, one of the driest places on earth, on their way from Copiapo to Antofagasta. The 458 kilometre long stage will mainly be characterized by very fine sand (called fesh fesh) as well as gravel and a lot of massive stones covered with desert sand.

Overall classification after leg 4 (Top 6)

01 Al-Attiyah/Baumel – MINI ALL4 Racing – 12:30:44h 02 De Villiers/Von Zitzewitz – 12:38:59h 03 Al Rajhi/Gottschalk – 12:54:17h 04 Ten Brinke/Colsoul – 13:13:16h 05 Holowczyc/Panseri – MINI ALL4 Racing – 13:14:14h 06 Van Loon/Rosegaar – MINI ALL4 Racing – 13:15:58h

Coming up.
Day 5 (08 January 2015). Start/finish: Copiapo/Antofagasta (Leg 5) Total distance: 697 km, Special stage: 458 km, Liaison: 239 km

MINI ALL4 Racing 2015 Dakar Rally Lineup.

Monster Energy Rally Raid Team.
#300 Nani Roma/Michel Périn (ES/FR) #305 Orlando Terranova/Bernardo „Ronnie“ Graue (AR/AR) #306 Krzysztof Holowczyc/Xavier Panseri (PL/FR)

X-raid Team.
#310 Vladimir Vasilyev/Konstantin Zhiltsov (RU/RU) #314 Erik van Loon/Wouter Rosegaar (NL/NL) #319 Boris Garafulic/Filipe Palmeiro (CL/PT) #329 Aidyn Rakhimbayev/Anton Nikolaev (KZ/RU) #332 Zhou Yong/Andreas Schulz (CN/DE) #334 Stephan Schott/Holm Schmidt (DE/DE)

Qatar Rally Team.
#301 Nasser Al-Attiyah/Mathieu Baumel (QT/FR)