• 2013 Dakar Rally Wrapup – Familiar Faces on top of the Podium

    2013 dakar rally kamaz jump
    Nice to see a 10 ton Kamaz truck getting launched into the air (photo courtesy of Daniel Sandy).

    The 2013 edition of the of the Dakar Rally has come to an end.  Who were the winners in the four divisions?  Was Robby Gordon able to break into the top 10 after a couple of costly mistakes at the beginning of the rally?  Lets break down the results.

    Cyril Despres ruled the Motorcycle category once again, taking the fifth overall Dakar victory of his illustrious career.  He was the favorite to win ahead of the race.  However, it was not a dominant victory as some initially predicted.  Despres won just one of the 14 stages and in the end was just 10 minutes ahead of second place Faria.  Notably, Fransisco Lopez – the popular Chilean rider – took the third overall spot after loosing second on the last day of the rally.

    stephan peterhansel 2013 dakar rally
    The MINI of Stephan Peterhansel.

    The situation was similar in the Car division.  Stephan Peterhansel was also one of the favorites to win and he took his X-raid MINI to his fifth overall Dakar victory in the car division and 12th overall win of his career.  After all, he is “Mr. Dakar”.  Stephan won only two stages, but remained in the overall lead since day two of the rally.  He saw many of his main competitors drop out with mechanical failures or other mistakes, and in the end he was 42 minutes ahead of the second place Toyota pickup of Giniel De Villiers.  Robby Gordon finished the rally in 14th place overall.  This is a good result for Robby considering two major setbacks early in the rally, which put him in 43rd spot after day four.  Robby also scored two stage wins and was able to claw back almost 20 minutes out of Stephan’s lead.

    The Patronelli family ruled the Quad division once again.  Marcos Patronelli scored his second overall Dakar victory.  Marcos’ brother did not participate this year.  Similar to Peterhansel, Marcos took the overall lead after day two and never relinquished it.  In the end he was almost two hours ahead of the second place Ignacio N. Casale.  This was the largest overall margin of victory among the four divisions.

    The Russian dynasty returned to power in the Truck division.  The Kamaz trucks swept the podium, led by Eduard Nikolaev.  This was Eduard’s second overall Dakar victory and he was able to accomplish it without winning a single stage.  His main competitor, the IVECO truck of Gerard De Rooy, was in forth place overall and 41 minutes adrift.  Interestingly, De Rooy won six stages this year, but had a huge setback on day nine when he got stuck.

    Although all the usual suspects won in the end, the 2013 Dakar Rally was still very exciting and interesting.  I know I will be watching again next year.

    Check out the 2013 Dakar Rally in this image gallery.

    Andre Smirnov
    Andre Smirnov

    Andre Smirnov is a life-long automotive enthusiast, software engineer, writer, and reporter. He has been writing and reporting at TFLcar since 2011. When not working or spending time with the family – you can find him tinkering in the garage or scouring the internet and other media for various automotive, mechanical, and computer related information.

    Andre Smirnov
    Andre Smirnov
    Andre Smirnov is an Automotive Enthusiast, Producer, Reviewer, Videographer, Writer, Software Engineer, Husband, Father, and Friend.