Aleksandr Maksimov, Rodrigo Luppi de Oliveira, and Eduard Nikolaev triumphed in stage 4 of the 2022 Dakar Rally as the quadbikes, SSV categories and trucks crossed the line.

Quads

Overall leader and yesterday’s stage winner Pablo Copetti opened for the quadbikes on their 465km special. However, the American found himself a minute and a half off the lead after the first 40km. Manuel Andujar was the quickest rider up to the first waypoint. Marcelo Medeiros lagged behind by 30 seconds, with Alexandre Giroud 2 seconds further back.

The next 40km was a tight dash, Andujar narrowly losing his lead to Medeiros. The Brazilian surpassed Andujar’s time by just 11 seconds as Copetti began his ascent back into the top 5.

Aleksandr Maksimov snatched the lead by the fourth time check, beating out Andujar by 26 seconds. Medeiros had dropped over a minute behind the lead.

Over the next few time checks, Maksimov maintained his lead. He gradually increased the gap to Andujar to almost 2 minutes at 198km into the special.

Very little change occurred for the lead over the majority of the special, Maksimov keeping a safe gap between himself and Andujar until the finish line. However, troubles did appear for Marcelo Medeiros, who lost plenty of time to the frontrunners. Medeiros finished the special in 5th, 15 minutes off the lead.

Meanwhile, Maksimov prevailed by almost 2 minutes ahead of Andujar. Giroud managed to beat Copetti to P3 by 1 minute.

The top 5 of the 2022 Dakar Rally stage 4 in the quadbike category:

PosRider Team Time/Gap
1Aleksandr MaksimovChyr Mari05:10.28
2Manuel Andujar 7240 Team+00:01.52
3Alexandre GiroudYamaha Racing+00:03.08
4Pablo CopettiDel Amo Motorsports/Yamaha Rally Team+00:04.17
5Marcelo MedeirosTeam Mercelo Medeiros+00:15.09

The overall top 5 of the 2022 Dakar Rally in the quadbike category:

PosRiderTeamTime/Gap
1Pablo CopettiDel Amo Motorsports/Yamaha Rally Team19:25.41
2Alexandre GiroudYamaha Racing+00:14.20
3Aleksandr MaksimovChyr Mari+00:24.55
4Manuel Andujar7240 Team+00:29.08
5Marcelo MedeirosTeam Marcelo Medeiros+01:15.38

Lightweight Prototype

Seth Quintero led the LW field away after winning stage 3 yesterday. Following 16 hours’ worth of penalties, fortunes turned his way as he claimed the lead across the first two checkpoints.

As the stage went on, Quintero pulled further away from his rivals. Guillaume de Mevius consistently managed P2 at each checkpoint as he followed in the rapid wake of Quintero.

Quintero remained unchallenged at the finish of the special, taking a dominant victory by almost 8 minutes. De Mevius took 2nd spot while Francisco Lopez Contardo claimed 3rd, over 15 minutes off the lead.

The top 5 of the 2022 Dakar Rally stage 4 in the LW Proto category:

PosDriverTeamTime/Gap
1Seth QuinteroRed Bull Off-Road Junior Team USA04:25.13
2Guillaume de MeviusRed Bull Off-Road Team USA+00:07.50
3Francisco Lopez ContardoEKS – South Racing+00:15.26
4Sebastian ErikssonEKS – South Racing+00:27.16
5Thomas BellSouth Racing Middle East+00:34.08

The overall top 5 of the 2022 Dakar Rally in the LW Proto category:

PosDriverTeamTime/Gap
1Francisco Lopez ContardoEKS – South Racing16:08.33
2Sebastian ErikssonEKS – South Racing+00:20.59
3Fernando AlvarezSouth Racing Can-Am+02:02.34
4Cristina Gutierrez HerreroRed Bull Off-Road Team USA+02:18.33
5Thomas BellSouth Racing Middle East+04:40.42

SSVs

Marek Goczal led the SSV category by the 40km waypoint, 5 seconds clear of Aron Domzala.

However, Marek Goczal lost time over the next 40km, toppling to 3rd place behind Domzala and Rodrigo Luppi de Oliveira.

Domzala continued his charge ahead of the pack, extending his lead at each time check. At the 120km checkpoint, he had 47 seconds over de Oliveira. By kilometer 158, he led by over a minute, with Marek Goczal lurking just 7 seconds behind de Oliveira.

By the sixth waypoint, Domzala ran into huge troubles and lost 3 minutes to his rivals. Consequentially, he dropped to P4 while Marek Goczal inherited the lead. De Oliveira continued in P2 with only 9 seconds to make up to Goczal. Austin Jones trailed the pair by over a minute.

Then came the final checkpoint before the finish and Goczal lost time. The former leader of the stage experienced a troublesome 20km leading up to the 438km mark. Goczal dropped to 5th place, 7 and a half minutes shy of the lead. Meanwhile, Domzala disappeared from the frontrunners altogether when he experienced a big crash at kilometer 298. The Polish driver was unable to finish the stage.

Rodrigo Luppi de Oliveira managed to hang onto a challenging victory in stage 4 of the Dakar Rally. He triumphed over Austin Jones by a mere 10 seconds as Michael Goczal also finished within a minute of the stage winner. It was a tight race in the SSV class today.

The top 5 of the 2022 Dakar Rally stage 4 in the SSV category

PosDriverTeamTime/Gap
1Rodrigo Luppi de OliveiraSouth Racing Can-Am04:44.05
2Austin JonesCan-Am Factory South Racing+00:00.10
3Michal GoczalCobant-Energylandia Rally Team+00:00.49
4Marek GoczalCobant-Energylandia Rally Team+00:06.43
5Rokas BaciuskaSouth Racing Can-Am+00:07.37

The overall top 5 of the 2022 Dakar Rally in the SSV Category

PosDriverTeamTime/Gap
1Austin Jones Can-Am Factory South Racing 16:38.08
2Rodrigo Luppi de Oliveira South Racing Can-Am +00:05.13
3Michal Goczal Cobant-Energylandia Rally Team +00:16.33
4Gerard Farres GuellCan-Am Factory South Racing+00:27.26
5Rokas Baciuska South Racing Can-Am +00:43.52

Trucks

Janus Van Kasteren put up a valiant fight against the dominant Kamaz quartet today. By the 40km waypoint, he brought his Iveco to P3 while Dmitry Sotnikov and Eduard Nikolaev were separated by a whisker.

Following this, Sotnikov began to drop down the order, dropping to P4 by the 120km mark. He only trailed Nikolaev by 43 seconds, demonstrating the close margins seen during the opening of the trucks’ stage.

Andrey Karginov snatched the lead from Nikolaev by the 198km checkpoint, only 10 seconds up on his Kamaz teammate. However, Karginov would descend down the order over the next few waypoints. By kilometer 398, the Russian slumped to 7th with a 14 minute and 30-second deficit to the leaders.

Then, further misfortune struck Karginov. His truck ground to a stop at the 421km mark. The Kamaz driver was dropping rapidly towards the edge of the top 10.

It was mostly Anton Shibalov who followed Nikolaev for the rest of the stage. He crossed the finish line second, losing out to Nikolaev by 3 and a half minutes. Sotnikov made it a Kamaz 1-2-3, with Van Kasteren coming home 4th.

The top 5 of the 2022 Dakar Rally stage 4 in the trucks category:

PosDriverTeamTime/Gap
1Eduard NikolaevKamaz04:14.46
2Anton ShibalovKamaz+00:03.35
3Dmitry SotnikovKamaz+00:05.35
4Janus Van KasterenPetronas Team De Rooy Iveco+00:05.44
5Gert HuzinkRiwald Dakar Team+00:14.23

The overall top 5 of the 2022 Dakar Rally in the trucks category:

PosDriverTeamTime/Gap
1Dmitry SotnikovKamaz15:02.53
2Eduard NikolaevKamaz+00:06.10
3Anton ShibalovKamaz+00:25.05
4Janus Van KasterenPetronas Team De Rooy Iveco+00:48.54
5Ales LopraisInstaforex Loprais Praga+00:58.10

I am a 17-year-old motorsport fan and writer who possesses a strong passion for machines that go fast. I am from Australia but I aspire to be a journalist covering motor racing series and events all over the globe.