Dakar Rally leader Sainz handed 10-minute penalty

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Salta (Argentina), Jan 16 (IANS) French car manufacturer Peugeot will appeal against a 10-minute penalty handed to Dakar Rally leader Carlos Sainz for “potentially dangerous” driving.

Dakar’s disciplinary committee on Monday ruled that the 55-year-old Spaniard was at fault after an apparent collision with Dutch quad rider Kees Koolen during the Stage 7 from La Paz to Uyuni, Bolivia on Saturday, reports Xinhua news agency.

“The truth is that Carlos did not hit the quad, because it was not damaged and also finished 10th in the two stages since,” Peugeot team boss Bruno Famin said.

“In addition, if the organisers believe there was bad behaviour on Carlos’ part, the penalty should be a monetary one. We are going to say that we are going to appeal the decision in the next hour.”

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Sainz, who won the race in 2010, still leads Qatari Nasser Al-Attiyah by almost 57 minutes with six days remaining.

Monday’s 242km stage from Tupiza in Bolivia to the northern Argentine city of Salta was cancelled due to bad weather.

–IANS

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