Peterhansel cleared of wrongdoing, Mini set to appeal

by Paul Hensby

Dakar Rally legend Stephane Peterhansel will continue in this years rally after being cleared of any wrongdoing during Monday’s eighth stage.

The Frenchman had been accused of refuelling his Peugeot in an unauthorised area during the stage, and had he been found guilty, the eleven-time Dakar winner risked being thrown out of the event.

Dakar organisers ASO deemed that Peterhansel had indeed adhered to the rules and was cleared to continue, but his rivals in the Mini X-Raid squad are looking to appeal the decision, believing that the Frenchman did in fact break the rules.

“The Stewards have made a decision regarding the protest, which we do not agree with,” said the statement from X-Raid.

“This is why we have decided to appeal this decision as per our rights in the sporting regulations and the FIA International Sporting Code, and will take our case to the ASN [National Sporting Authority], the FFSA [Federation Francaise du Sport Automobile], National Court of Appeals.”

Peterhansel had taken over the lead of the rally during the stage when erstwhile leader Sébastien Loeb and co-driver Daniel Elena lost over an hour after rolling their Peugeot.  Nasser Al-Attiyah and co-driver Mathieu Baumel had claimed the stage win for X-Raid Mini.

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