From a particularly short stage to the longest special of the rally. The contrasts of the Dakar also reach their route and the participants face a long timed section of 464 kilometers between Al Qaisumah and Riyahd. The race heads to the capital of Saudi Arabia, the stage that will host the fifth and sixth stages, as well as the rest day and the start of the seventh day that will kick off the second half of the rally. A high pace day is expected, even if there are changes of surfaces that will force a perfect adaptation. Yes indeed, navigation seems to be a little less complicated than in previous days, so the fastest riders can make a profit.
The race also changes scenery. The sandy off-piste terrain gives the witness to other types of surfaces, with more compact dirt tracks on the great plains that make up the first section of the stage. There will also be dry lakes and some punctual dune cordon, although they are barely 12% of the total route of the stage. Although navigation today will not be the most important issue, it does seem that the drivers and co-drivers will have to carry out a perfect adaptation exercise to the different terrain and circumstances of the race. Deep gas zones, tactical sections, river and lake beds, some critical navigation point and a few dunes dot the day..
Despite being the longest stage of the 44th Dakar Rally, the pace in competition will be quite high. The first motorcycle, the Hero by Joaquim Rodrigues, will open the competitive day at 5:10 am. Proof of the enormous speed that is expected today is in the organization’s forecasts, since the best ‘motards’ are expected to complete the 464 kilometers of special in about 5 and a half hours. The first quad will start the competition at 6:27 am, while Carlos Sainz will start at 7:50 am as the first participant in the car category and it is expected that he can be at the finish line around 1:00 p.m. The start for T3 is at 8:51 am, for T4 at 9:01 am and for trucks at 09:20 am.