Dakar 2017’s stage 7 was dramatically cut down due to the extreme weather conditions that hit Bolivia over the weekend. Despite its shortened state, the stage delivered close competition between Peugeot’s Stéphane Peterhansel and Sébastian Loeb.
Peugeot’s Cyril Despres, meanwhile, consistently lost time throughout the stage, allowing Toyota Storm’s Nani Roma to climb up into third place.
Roma admitted that his naturally aspirated Hilux struggled to keep up with the turbocharged Peugeots in the high altitudes of the Bolivian mountains.
South Africa’s Giniel de Villiers managed to pick up the pace and jump two positions after ending the 161 km stage in third place, putting him in sixth overall.
The eighth stage will see the competitors return to the long-distance routes with a 492 km special stage.
The current standings are as follows:
1. Peterhansel (Peugeot) 15 h 57 min 06 sec
2. Loeb (Peugeot) +1 min 57 sec
3. Roma (Toyota) +11 min 07 sec
4. Despres (Peugeot) +14 min 01 sec
5. Hirvonen (Mini) +47 min 24 sec
6. De Villiers (Toyota) +1 h 11 min 44 sec
7. Terranova (Mini) +1 h 16 min 06 sec
8. Przygonsi (Mini) +1 h 18 min 02 sec
9. Garafulic (Mini) +2 h 08 min 20 sec
10. Dumas (Peugeot) +2 h 48 min 34 sec