The battle is severe between the two Volkswagen of Nasser Al Attiyah and Carlos Sainz for the leadership of the race. The Qatari is still ahead after winning the first SS of the day while Sainz stay close only just on 3 minutes 56 seconds behind. In the trucks race, Vladimir Chagin took the lead overall from the Holland challenger Gerard De Rooy winning both SS today.
Qatari pilot Nasser Al Attiyah’s ambitions are clear for everybody. To win the Silk Way rally he choose to push from the beginning in Kazan. From the first start he has shown confidence and fast driving. After his victory in Bouguruslan the Qatari had to keep his advantage without taking to much risk on a two specials day. To add to the difficulty, Al Attiyah had to start in front of the field right before Spanish Carlos Sainz. In the morning 116 km long stage, Nasser not only came in first, but also increase the gap to 1 minute 6 seconds.
The route was still quite rough and in some areas very narrow on the second special of the day where Carlos Sainz managed to turn into “Al Matador” again ! After midday, just before leaving Russia he won the special, but with only a 3 seconds advantage that didn’t allow him to won the day overall. But as we know, the taste of a victory might excite the Spanish, especially as tomorrow’s stage in Kazakhstan is the longest and the most important in this race.
The next stage – 580 km of special from Ouralsk to Beyneu will probably make the situation clearer for the 5th place battle. As the four first places are strongly consolidate by the Volkswagens, who will get the 5th interests supporters not less than the competitors. Christian Lavieille can grab the 5th row, it looks very possible in spite of the close competition with Mathias Kahle and Aleksey Bercut, who have 6th and 7th places overall.
One more battle continues in the trucks race between Vladimir Chagin and Gerard De Rooy. The crew of KAMAZ-master won both stages of today and took the lead overall. In the first SS the King grabbed just 17 seconds from De Rooy, but in the second one he overcomes the Holland team by 2 minutes and 34 seconds. After the main challengers came one more KAMAZ-master crew, Firdaus Kabirov who forced out Ales Loprais from the Top 3.