info

DAKAR-AGADES-DAKAR 1997
Communique 11
LEG 9 : AGADES (NIGER) - OCLAN (NIGER)
Distance : 315KM
Stage distance : 283KM
AGADES, NIGER
Monday, January 13, 1997


MITSUBISHI'S FONTENAY TAKES LEAD
IN DAKAR RALLY


A revised 315 km route from Agades to Oclan brought about a change of leadership in the Dakar Rally today, January 13, as French pair Jean-Pierre Fontenay and Bruno Musmarra moved to the front of the field in their Team Off Road Express Mitsubishi Ralliart Pajero. Mitsubishi maintained its impressive hold at the top of the leaderboard with first, second, third and fourth places, although Jutta Kleinschmid won the competitive section in her buggy, becoming the first woman ever to do so on a major off-road rally.

As the epic African event started the second half of its arduous 8,518 km route, turning back towards Dakar in searing heat once again, leader at the half-way point, Japanese ace Kenjiro Shinozuka, partnered by French navigator Henri Magne, dropped back to second place in his Team Mitsubishi Oil Ralliart Pajero, incredibly just 17 seconds down on their leading team mates.

The ninth leg of the Dakar placed the emphasis on navigation as the remaining 102 cars and trucks powered their way across open desert, mostly without marked tracks and just a few way points of GPS (Global Positioning System) to guide them. The route was changed during the weekend with a new section from Agades to the half-way point of the original stage. In such situations, the leading vehicle, as Shinozuka was today, is always at a disadvantage as the cars behind can follow his tracks with a great deal more confidence. The second part of the leg took the competitors along a dry riverbed, riddled with unmarked wells that can trap the unwary.

Bruno Saby and Dominique Serieys, both from France, were second fastest on the section in their Team PIAA Mitsubishi Ralliart Pajero and held third place, less than six minutes down on Shinozuka. Japanese Driver Hiroshi Masuoka, co-driven by German Andreas Schulz, was fifth quickest to maintain fourth place in the Team Car Plaza Mitsubishi Oil Ralliart Challenger / Montero Sport.

Among the runners French Jean-Pierre Strugo and Bruno Cattarelli kept to their promise of driving carefully in their leading T3/1 Pajero, holding eighth at Oclan after setting seventh fastest, while Thailand's Pornsawan Siriwatanakun and Suvanarat Tull were eighth quickest in their Pajero to hold on to ninth place overall.

Keeping up Mitsubishi's continuing tradition of success on this year's Dakar, Portuguese entry Carlos Souza and Philippe Rey consolidated their lead in T1, the class for near-standard vehicles, but with an enormous advantage over their rivals they were able to relax and drive carefully today, setting just third fastest in the class. The Mitsubishi trucks continued in style with both reaching Oclan in good shape after their arduous track through this difficult desert section. Today, there are no mechanics at Oclan because it is the first part of th three leg marathon section, where no service is allowed.



SS9 /EC9 AGADES - OCLAN 315KM

Å@Å@ Å@Å@ Å@Å@ Å@Å@ Å@Å@ Å@Å@ Å@Å@ Å@Å@ Å@Å@
1 - J. KLEINSCHMIDT SCHLESSER ORIGT3.2 02:29:56
2 - B. SABY MITSUBISHI PAJEROT2 02:36:22
3 - JP FONTENAY MITSUBISHI PAJEROT202:36:22
4 - K. SHINOZUKA MITSUBISHI Pajero T2 02:38:21
5 - H. MASUOKA MITSUBISHI Challenger / Montero Sport T2 02:41:29
6 - S. SERVIA NISSANT2 02:46:02
7 - JP STRUGO MITSUBISHI PajeroT3.1 02:46:39
8 - P. SIRIWATANAKUN MITSUBISHI PajeroT2 02:47:03
9 - M. TRAGLIO NISSANT2 02:50:34
10 - D. GUEDES NISSANT2 02:51:48



GENERAL CLASSIFICATION after SS9 / CLASSEMENT GENERAL après EC9

Å@Å@ Å@Å@ Å@Å@ Å@Å@ Å@Å@ Å@Å@ Å@Å@ Å@Å@ Å@Å@ Å@Å@ Å@Å@
1 - JP. FONTENAY / B. MUSMARRA (FR) MITSUBISHI PAJERO T2 38:09:00
2 - K. SHINOZUKA / H. MAGNE (J/FR) MITSUBISHI PAJEROT2+00:00:17
3 - B. SABY / D. SERIEYS (FR) MITSUBISHI PAJERO T2 +00:08:06
4 - H. MASUOKA/A. SCHULZ (J/D) MITSUBISHI CHALLENGER/MONTERO SPORTT2+02:12:04
5 - S. SERVIA / G. PICARD (SP/FR) NISSANT2 +04:22:36
6 - J. KLEINSCHMIDT / J. BOUTAIRE (D/FR) SCHLESSER ORIGT3.2 +04:31:28
7 - M. TRAGLIO / M. DOMINELLA (I) NISSANT2 +04:56:48
8 - JP STRUGO / B. CATARELLI (FR) MITSUBISHI PAJEROT3.1 +05:28:12
9 - P. SIRIWATANAKUN / T. SUVANARAT MITSUBISHI PAJEROT2 +05:49:17
10- E. ARGAZZI/R. ARGAZZI (IT) NISSANT2 +07:25:50
11- C. SOUZA / P. REY (POR/FR) MITSUBISHIT1 +07:40:59


Tomorrow, Tuesday, January 14, 1997
Leg 10: Oclan (Niger) - Kidal (Mali)
Special Stage: 537km

The 10th leg of the Dakar takes the surviving competitors back into Mali with a tough, bivouac-to-bivouac section with no liaison, 400 km of which will be through barren desert with few points of reference for the navigators. The section will form the second leg of the three-leg marathon section with limited service which started from Agades. The first motorbike is due to leave Oclan at 06:45, due to arrive in Kidal at around 12:45, with the first car scheduled at 07:15 aiming for Kidal by 12:45.


MITSUBISHI OIL - PIAA - OFF ROAD EXPRESS - MICHELIN



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Copyright 1996 by Mitsubishi Motors Corporation.