Cars: Peterhansel on verge of glory

Cars: Peterhansel on verge of glory
By Eurosport

15/01/2012 at 05:40Updated 15/01/2012 at 22:46

Stephane Peterhansel is cruising towards a 10th Dakar Rally victory after winning Saturday's penultimate stage from Nasca to Pisco.

The French driver's stage win saw him widen the gap over Spanish team-mate and closest challenger Nani Roma to more than 43 minutes.

Toyota driver Giniel de Villiers was second on Saturday's stage, eight minutes behind Peterhansel.

Peterhansel seems all but certain to win his fourth Dakar car title to add to his six motorcycle victories in the iconic race.

"It was not a stage we were trying to win. First and foremost, we wanted to avoid falling into traps, especially after getting stuck in the sand yesterday," said Peterhansel.

"It was the toughest stage of the entire Dakar with regard to the dunes. We made a tactical choice to start with lower-than-normal tyre pressure, so we had to be very careful at certain points, but we did well on the dunes. We were under psychological pressure because we came within an inch of losing the Dakar yesterday.

"Victories are earned day by day and I still feel like I am in the race. There is still a 30-kilometre special to go and we could have a technical problem. I am still holding my breath this evening. I will breathe again once I am on the podium."