Nine-times World Rally Championship winner Sebastien Loeb drops out of Dakar

Thrills and spills on day five of Dakar Rally
Thrills and spills on day five of Dakar Rally
By Mark Armstrong
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Loeb was forced to drop out after his vehicle fell into a sand crater injuring his co-driver. Portuguese football coach Andre Villas-Boas also withdrew after hurting his back.


Day five of the 40th edition of the Dakar rally on Wednesday and the spectacular Peruvian desert terrain started to take its toll on the drivers. It was all going so well for nine-time World Championship winner Sebastien Loeb who was leading in the car section. But then his vehicle fell into a crater in the sand. His co-driver Daniel Elena had to be treated for an injury forcing Loeb to drop out of the race.

Loeb's Peugeot teammate Stephane Peterhansel extended his overall lead of the Dakar Rally after winning the fifth stage on Wednesday.

The Frenchman, a 13-time Dakar champion in all categories, won the 266-kilometre stage between San Juan de Marcona and Arequipa in 2 hours, 51 minutes, 19 seconds.

Portuguese football coach Andre Villas-Boas also had to withdraw from the rally on Wednesday after damaging his back during the fourth stage of the race. The former Spurs and Chelsea manager was airlifted out by helicopter.

In the motorbike class it was Joan Barreda Bort who took the 5th stage victory on his Honda, but Frenchman Adrien van Beveran of Yamaha still leads the overall classification despite a disappointing fifth place on Wednesday.

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