Motorsport

Casteu takes Dakar lead

2013-01-12 21:23
David Casteu (File)

Tucuman - French motorcyclist David Casteu took the overall lead in the rain-hit Dakar Rally on Saturday after longtime leader Olivier Pain endured a miserable eighth stage from Salta to Tucuman.

Joan Barreda Bort claimed the 183km timed run in 2hr 7min 26sec, ahead of America's Johnny Campbell, who was 7min 4sec behind, with Slovakia's Ivan Jakes in third, 7min 57sec off the pace.

Torrential rain led to large parts of the stage, which had been set for 492km, being cancelled.

Casteu, on a Yamaha, has a 9min 26sec overall lead over defending champion Cyril Despres and an 11min 16sec advantage over Portugal's Ruben Faria.

Pain finished more than 30 minutes off the pace and is now fifth overall, 16min 10sec behind Casteu in the race for the title.

Pain was one of a batch of riders who got lost at the 122km stage.

"A huge navigational success," said Casteu. "I'm over the moon because it's difficult to ride at the front while attacking and keeping your bearings, navigating.

"I was able to keep my cool while everyone else was spinning around, but I stayed focused and was the first across the line."


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