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Silk Way Rally: Frenchman retains overall lead as Loeb finishes second


07-17-2016 15:56 BJT

To continue with racing but switch to four wheels as we check in on Stage Seven of the Silk Way Rally. After a much needed rest day in Almaty, Kazakhstan, the drivers were back in action on Saturday for a short, but not to be overlooked timed sector run in the high-mountain plains at an elevation of  2,000 to 2,600 metres above sea level.

Silk Way RallyL: Frenchman retains overall lead as Loeb finishes second

Stage seven would go from Almaty and end in Bortala of China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, covering a total of 610 kilometers.

Cyril Despres, in his Peugeot, would extend his overall lead in the general classification to more than ten minutes by beating Sebastien Loeb in the leg by 2 minutes and 46 seconds.

But for Despres, the most impressive part of this stage was the fantastic view along the road rather than the victory, because the scenery reminded him of his native France which is still reeling from the deadly attack in Nice three days ago.

"This is a very beautiful stage, it reminds me of France and the terrorist attack in Nice. It makes me feel very sad," said Cyril Despres who leads after seventh stage.

Van Den Brink tops trucks category after Nikolaev mishap

Vladimir Vasilyev in a MINI ALL4 Racing car maintained his potential podium result with the third best time at 4 minutes and ten seconds behind Despres.

England's Harry Hunt moved into the Top 10 overall with fourth best time in another of the Robias Quandt run cars.

China's Miao Ma rounded out the top five in a Nissan powered SCORE buggy, and sits 19th overall.

Martin Van Den Brink won another stage in his Renault Sherpa to take command of the truck category, while previous leader, Edouard Nikolaev lost more than one hour with an oil leak after hitting a rock to plummet down to 7th place at 55'36".

The next stage from Bortala to Urumqi will traverse 905 kilometers and includes a special stage measuring 256 kilometers.

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