Audi’s Mattias Ekstrom has claimed the 8th stage of the Dakar rally, while Qatar's Nasser Al-Attiyah retained his lead in the general rankings.
Ekstrom clocked 3 hours, 43 minutes and 31 seconds to win the stage on Monday, 49 seconds ahead of his teammate and 14-time Dakar rally winner, Stephane Peterhansel. In the meantime, nine-time World Rally Champion Sebastien Loeb finished third to cut the gap on the Qatari leader to 37 seconds. Al-Attiyah, who is chasing his 4th Dakar title, finished 11th. Stage 9, which is 491 kilometers, will be held on Tuesday.