*Veteran Spaniard Carlos Sainz wins Dakar Rally for the third time; Brabec first US rider to triumph in motorbike section
Qatar’s Nasser Saleh
al-Attiyah won the final stage of the Dakar
Rally 2020 but it
wasn’t enough to overhaul Carlos
Sainz’s overall lead as the veteran
Spaniard won the title for the
third time in his career.
The 57-year-old crossed the
line in the 12th and final stage
6min 21sec ahead of nearest
challenger and defending champion al-Attiyah, who had managed to cut Sainz’s lead to just 24
seconds on Tuesday but fell back
after navigation blunders.
However, al-Attiyah’s final
stage win ensured he saw off the
challenge from 13-time champion Stéphane Peterhansel for the
Qatar’s Nasser Saleh al-Attiyah (right) and French co-driver Mathieu Baumel celebrate after winning the final stage and finishing second overall in the Dakar Rally 2020 in Qiddiya, Saudi Arabia, Friday. (Red Bull Content Pool)
Spain’s Carlos Sainz (right) and co-driver Lucas Cruz celebrate their win in the Dakar Rally 2020 Friday. (Red Bull Content Pool)
Al-Attiyah said: “I’m quite
happy. We did a good job to finish
second even though we wanted to
win. We made two or three mistakes along the way and had loads
of punctures. It was going well on
that 10th stage with no problems.
We caught Stéphane and then, at
one point, we got a little bit lost
for two or three minutes. Then
we got to the waypoint and then
we took the wrong way. We did
around 20km extra.
“But I’m rather happy. I’m
elated that we are racing here.
I’m coming back to win next year.
I just needed a bit more luck...”
Sainz, the father of Formula
1 driver Carlos Sainz Jr., seized
control of the race from the third
stage in his X-raid Mini.
“I feel very happy. There’s a
lot of effort behind this. A lot of
training, practice,” Sainz told the
“It has been a flat
out rally since the beginning. It
was fantastic, a first time in Saudi
Arabia, of course you can always
improve but it was a fantastic effort,” he added.
Asked about defending his title next year Sainz said: “It’s too
early to think about it, let me enjoy this.”
He has now won the Dakar
with three different manufacturers, having previously triumphed
with Volkswagen in 2010 and
Peugeot in 2018.
Peterhansel was third at 9min
58sec behind in his Mini.
the Frenchman and Sainz won
four stages in the marathon 12-
day, 7,800-kilometre (4,800-
Ricky Brabec triumphed in the
motorbike section for Honda,
becoming the first US rider to
win the gruelling race.
Two-time F1 champion Fernando Alonso finished 13th on his
Dakar debut, nearly five hours
behind the winner.
Alonso came second in one
stage but his first participation
in the Dakar was a bruising affair
as the 38-year-old Spaniard suffered a double rollover in the 10th
stage after hitting a dune at an
The race was marred by the
death of Portuguese rider Paulo
Goncalves during Sunday’s seventh stage.
1. Carlos Sainz (ESP)/Lucas Cruz
(ESP) MINI John Cooper Works
Buggy 42hr 59min 17sec
2. Nasser Saleh al-Attiyah (QAT)/
Matthieu Baumel (FRA) Toyota
Hilux 43hr 05min 38sec
3. Stéphane Peterhansel (FRA)/
Paulo Fiuza (PRT) MINI John
Cooper Works Buggy 43hr 09min
4. Yazeed al-Rajhi (SAU)/Konstantin Zhiltsov (RUS) Toyota Hilux
Overdrive 43hr 48min 27sec
5. Giniel de Villiers (ZAF)/Alex
Haro (ESP) Toyota Hilux 44hr
6. Orlando Terranova (ARG)/
Ronnie Graue (ARG) MINI John
Cooper Works Rally 44hr 11min
7. Bernhard Ten Brinke (NLD)/
Tom Colsoul (BEL) Toyota Hilux
44hr 17min 51sec
8. Mathieu Serradori (FRA)/Fabian Lurquin (BEL) Century Buggy
44hr 58min 38sec
9. Yasir Seaidan (SAU)/Alexei
Kuzmich (RUS) MINI John Cooper
Works Rally 46hr 41min 34sec
10. Wei Han (CHN)/Min Liao (CHN)
Hanwei Motorsport 2WD 46hr