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 Tuesday, 7 January, 2003, 16:34 GMT
Mitsubishi dominate Dakar
Mitsubishi's Stephane Peterhansel heads for victory in stage six
Tuesday's stage headed across the Sahara into Libya
Dakar Rally (stage 6)

Mitsubishi tightened their grip on the Dakar Rally with another stage victory on Tuesday.

French driver Stephane Peterhansel won the 228km sixth stage to re-take the race lead from team-mate Hiroshi Matsuoka.

Mitsubishi's domination was completed by the retirement of twice-winner Jean-Louis Schlesser, who was seen as their main rival.

He was forced to quit when he suffered engine failure 60km into the stage.

Matsuoka had taken a 50-second overall lead in winning Monday's fifth stage in Tunisia.

But Peterhansel's victory allowed him to leapfrog the Japanese driver and establish a 49-second advantage of his own.

In the motorbike category, Alfie Cox halted an alarming slide in form.

The South African veteran triumphed by more than a minute from Spain's Joan Mani Roma.

Double champion and overall leader Richard Sainct finished fifth, five minutes off Cox's time and almost four minutes behind Roma.

Sainct saw his lead cut from four minutes 16 seconds to just 17 seconds, while Cox moved into fourth overall.


Cars

Stage six leading results
1. Stephane Peterhansel (Fra) Mitsubishi 2hr 02min 56sec
2. Hiroshi Masuoka (Jpn) Mitsubishi at 1min 44sec
3. Gregoire de Mevius (Bel) BMW at 4:30
4. Kenjiro Shinozuka (Jpn) Nissan at 6:33
5. Ari Vatanen (Fin) Nissan at 8:36
6. Miki Biasion (Ita) Mitsubishi at 9:20
7. Luc Alphand (Fra) BMW at 11:29
8. Jutta Kleinschmidt (Ger) Volkswagen at 12:40
9. Stephane Henrard (Bel) (Gbr) Volkswagen at 13:48
10. Giniel de Villiers (Rsa) Nissan at 15:07

Leading overall standings
1. Peterhansel (Fra) Mitsubishi 5:14:16
2. Masuoka (Jpn) Mitsubishi at 49sec
3. De Mevius (Bel) BMW at 15:32
4. Shinozuka (Jpn) Nissan at 16:27
5. Biasion (Ita) Mitsubishi at 23:33
Main retirement: Jean-Louis Schlesser (Fra) Schlesser-Ford


Motorbikes (all KTM)

Stage six leading results
1. Alfie Cox (Rsa) 2:27:54
2. Joan Nani Roma (Spa) at 1:07
3. Cyril Despres (Fra) at 1:59
4. Fabrizio Meoni (Ita) at 2:58
5. Richard Sainct (Fra) at 5:06
6. Milan Stanovnik (Slo) at 7:13
7. Giovanni Sala (Ita) at 8:09
8. Carlo De Gavardo (Chi) at 9:10
9. Paulo Manuel Marques (Por) at 9:23
10. Marek Dabrowski (Pol) at 9:25

Leading overall standings
1. Sainct (Fra) 6:23:11
2. Roma (Spa) at 17sec
3. Meoni (Ita) at 17
4. Cox (Rsa) at 3:33
5. Despres (Fra) at 4:23

See also:

06 Jan 03 | Motorsport
05 Jan 03 | Motorsport
03 Jan 03 | Motorsport
02 Jan 03 | Motorsport
01 Jan 03 | Motorsport
31 Dec 02 | Motorsport
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