Dakar favorite heavily penalized after destroying another driver’s motorcycle

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The Dakar Rally 2022 is currently taking place in Saudi Arabia. Giniel de Villiers, who competes in the cars, is not having his best rally. Although he is among the top players, he can forget about the victory after receiving a huge time penalty.

He was previously given a five-minute penalty for knocking over and nearly running over a Chilean driver, now he has been given a five-hour penalty for an even more serious offence. In the second stage, De Villiers drove over an engine, which broke down as a result.

In the second stage, where sand dunes had to be conquered, the South African drove straight over a motorbike of a driver who was behind the dune. Fortunately, the motorcycle racer himself was not near his vehicle, but was able to forget about it afterwards. His motorcycle was a total loss.

The fact that the engine was behind a dune and therefore perhaps not visible to the naked eye is no excuse. In the Dakar Rally, systems are in place to prevent these kinds of accidents from happening. The so-called ‘Sentinel’ system, which uses GPS, warns drivers with loud beeps that a vehicle is stationary or that a vehicle is approaching that wants to overtake you.

De Villiers told the Dakar flight attendants that he did not hear these alarms and thinks his navigator may have turned them off accidentally, as the button is on the floor on his side and can easily be turned off by mistake.

De Villiers pulls the wallet

With his Toyota he landed on top of the engine, which was destroyed. De Villiers himself approached the driver in question and offered to compensate all damage. In addition, he has promised to pay the driver’s entrance fee for the next Dakar Rally.

The motorcycle racer, Moroccan Mohamedsaid Aoulad Ali, has indicated that he is very satisfied with that offer, as a result of which the stewards were not forced to hand out a heavier penalty than a time penalty. They do emphasize that safety is extremely important and that it was the responsibility of De Villiers and his co-driver to avoid the engine.

That is why he received a hefty time penalty of five hours, with which he can forget about a very good final classification. He was in fourth place, but is now in fourth place. Below is a video of the incident for which he was previously sentenced. The other incident has not been recorded.

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