The second stage of the 2022 Dakar took the crews from Hail to Al Qaisumah and not, as originally planned, to Al Artawiyah. As heavy rainfall had led to flooding at the bivouac, the organisers took the decision to cancel the marathon stage. Jakub “Kuba” Przygonski (POL) and Timo Gottschalk (GER) ended the day in 15th place in their MINI JCW Buggy, followed by Sebastian Halpern and Bernardo “Ronnie” Graue (both ARG) – also in a MINI JCW Buggy – in 16th. Halpern currently lies seventh in the overall standings, with Przygonski ninth.
Denis Krotov and Konstantin Zhiltsov came home 22nd in another MINI JCW Buggy, with the MINI JCW Rally crew of Yasir Seaidan (KSA) and Alexey Kuzmich directly behind them in 23rd. Seaidan is now 12th overall, while Krotov lies 16th. Laia Sanz (ESP) and Maurizio Gerini (ITA) finished the stage in 35th place in the MINI ALL4 Racing and are currently 29th overall.
Kuba Przygonski: “As far as the terrain was concerned, it was a nice stage, with sand and dunes. We lost time, as we are not fast enough at the moment. We have to find out why this evening.”
Sebastian Halpern: “Today’s stage was very fast. We did a good job on the first 280 kilometres. The dunes were very soft and fell away steeply in the final sector. We were not so fast there and lost four or five minutes. We are in the top ten of the overall standings, but we still have a lot of days ahead of us.”
Tomorrow’s third stage is a loop around the bivouac in Al Qaisumah. Sand, but also fast sections, await the drivers on the 255-kilometre stage. Due to numerous junctions the navigators will have to stay fully focussed.