2024 Dakar Rally: Everyone in Stock reaches finish led by Akira Miura

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Credit: Florent Gooden/DPPI

The Stock category is traditionally the smallest category at participating World Rally-Raid Championship rounds, with the two-car Team Land Cruiser Toyota Auto Body being the only team that routinely shows up to every race. While the Land Cruiser 300 GR Sports still ruled the day at the 2024 Dakar Rally, Akira Miura and Ronald Basso finally had someone else on the third step of the podium with them.

While Toyota Auto Body once again claimed victory for the eleventh Dakar in a row with Miura winning for the fourth time, the Nissan Patrol of Ibrahim Almuhna finally reached the finish as well. Although a distant third who routinely finished behind the Land Cruisers, he still had his moments when he was runner-up to Miura in Stage #5. He was forced to retire early on, which relegated him to the Dakar Experience that allowed competitors who exited a stage to continue the race if their vehicles are able. Almuhna, the reigning FIA Middle Eastern Baja Cup T2 champion, has regularly appeared at the Dakar since it moved to his home country of Saudi Arabia in 2020.

As in most editions over the past decade, Toyota Auto Body won all twelve stages, with Miura claiming seven to Basso’s five as well as the Prologue. Both, as was much of the field, were plagued by tyre punctures throughout the first day before things normalised across the next two legs.

Basso, the defending Dakar winner who claimed both Stock (then T2) W2RC rounds in 2023, suffered a setback in Stage #4 when he hit a rock while clouded by dust, damaging the front suspension. This allowed Miura, who was already dealing with high oil temperatures, to take the overall lead. Miura enjoyed a three-stage win streak as additional trouble plagued Basso such as getting stuck in a valley in Stage #5 before being trapped in the middle of the desert at sunset during the Chrono Stage. Both cars struggled through Stage #7 as Miura got stuck in feshfesh at the start before getting lost, while Basso survived a pair of flats and another misadventure that lodged him in a depression. These issues piled up until Basso was too far back to catch Miura for the overall.

The duo worked together in Stage #8 when bolts securing the front of Basso’s Land Cruiser came apart and Miura gave him his. They made it through the next two legs without incident by racing together, a strategy co-opted by other teams that included eventual Dakar outright champion Audi. In Stage #11, Basso was rear-ended by a truck but avoided serious damage and ended up setting the day’s fastest time anyway.

Miura dedicated the overall win to his close friend and longtime co-driver Laurent Lichtleuchter, who was killed in an accident during the 2023 Morocco Desert Challenge. On the finish podium, he and the team held up a photo of Lichtleuchter. SSV driver Yasir Seaidan also had a tribute to Lichtleuchter on his car.

“It was the toughest Dakar Rally. However, being able to finish it gave me confidence and I felt like I have improved,” said Miura. “I’ve been supported by my navigator Laurent until now, and I wish I could tell him that I did it properly this time.”

The class is one of two FIA-sanctioned categories alongside Truck that does not award a W2RC trophy due to low entries and only appearing at the Dakar and season-ending Rallye du Maroc.

Stock overall results

1500Akira MiuraMayeul BarbetTeam Land Cruiser Toyota Auto Body78:43:58Leader
2501Ronald BassoJean-Michel PolatoTeam Land Cruiser Toyota Auto Body126:43:52+ 47:59:54
3502Ibrahim AlmuhnaFaisal AlsuwayhAlmuhna Racers184:48:11+ 106:04:13

Stock stage winners

PrologueAkira Miura24:06.9
Stage #1Ronald Basso7:09:25
Stage #2Akira Miura5:47:57
Stage #3Ronald Basso6:00:23
Stage #4Akira Miura3:45:09
Stage #5Akira Miura2:19:51
Stage #6Akira Miura15:26:31
Stage #7Ronald Basso8:37:23
Stage #8Akira Miura5:31:53
Stage #9Ronald Basso7:39:14
Stage #10Akira Miura4:53:04
Stage #11Ronald Basso7:21:02
Stage #12Akira Miura2:37:06
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