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10 Jan 2017

Belarus’ MAZ-SPORTavto team make top five in Dakar Rally Stage 7

MINSK, 10 January (BelTA) – Belarusian truck driver Sergei Vyazovich crossed the finishing line of the seventh leg of the 2017 Dakar Rally in 5th position moving closer to the overall top ten, BelTA learned from Belarusian mobile carrier velcom, a technical partner of the MAZ-SPORTavto team.

Stage 7 was rather dangerous due to the torrential rain that hit Bolivia and forced the organizers to cut the timed section by half to 161km. A part of the stage ran along the original route of the sixth leg of the rally which was canceled because of the weather.

Sergei Vyazovich covered the selective section in 1h47m, losing five minutes to the stage winner, Russia’s Kamaz driver Dmitry Sotnikov.

The Belarusian racer climbed to 16th position overall, 3h25m off Dutchman Gerard de Rooy (Iveco) who currently tops the overall standings in the truck category followed by Russia’s Kamaz drivers Dmitry Sotnikov and Eduard Nikolaev.

Alexei Vishnevsky cleared the stage in 1h57m and finished in 16th, 16 minutes behind Dmitry Sotnikov. The young Belarusian racer is 20th overall, 4h47m off Gerard de Rooy.

Alexander Vasilevsky came in 20th as he suffered a tire puncture. He now sits in 11th place overall in the truck category.

The eighth stage of the Dakar Rally will take the racers to Salta, Argentina. The route of the scheduled 492km timed run may be changed.

The MAZ-SPORTavto team take part in the Dakar Rally for the sixth time. Alfa-Bank and velcom are the team’s partners. The 2017 Dakar Rally is running through Argentina, Bolivia and Paraguay from 2 to 14 January 2017. The racers will cover a distance of some 9,000km. As many as 44 trucks are currently competing in the 2017 event.

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