Multiple mechanical issues yesterday may have ruined Red Bull Off-Road Junior Team USA driver Seth Quintero’s chance at a 2022 Dakar Rally victory, but the young American appears poised to remove any doubt on whether or not he deserved the Light Prototype title over the next week and a half. Quintero scored another stage victory on Tuesday’s Al Qaisumah loop stage, finishing with a winning time of 2:52:23 that was over five minutes faster than division leader Chaleco Lopez.
Red Bull Global Rallycross veteran and Lopez’s EKS South Racing teammate Sebastian Eriksson completed the podium on the day, and remains second to Lopez in the overall class standings at 9:09 back. Third overall is MSK Rally Team’s Pavel Lebedev, who finished just 90 seconds behind Eriksson for a stage podium, and remains within half an hour of the top spot.
In the SSV class, it was the brothers Goczal atop the daily standings, with older brother Marek completing the stage 2:50 ahead of younger brother Michal, and Aron Domzala completing a Polish sweep of the daily podium in third. But American driver Austin Jones, who took over the class lead with a second place finish on Stage 2, nonetheless managed to extend his advantage to 5:53 over Rodrigo Luppi; the duo completed the top five on the day.
Behind Jones and Luppi, Gerard Farres remains third overall in the SSV class thanks to a top 10 stage finish on Tuesday. While only the podium runners in Light Prototype are within an hour of the lead, five SSV racers are within an hour of Jones, with Michal Goczal and Lithuanian Rokas Baciuska in fourth and fifth despite 15 minutes of penalties each and Domzala sitting sixth.
2022 Dakar Rally Stage 3 winners were as follows:
- Light Prototype: Seth Quintero (USA), 2:52:23
- SSV: Marek Goczal (POL), 2:58:46
2022 Dakar Rally overall leaders after Stage 3 are as follows:
- Light Prototype: Chaleco Lopez (CHL), 11:27:54
- SSV: Austin Jones (USA), 11:53:53
The Dakar Rally continues tomorrow with Stage 4, the longest special stage of the rally, taking competitors to Riyadh with 465 kilometers of competitive stage time. Coverage of Stage 3 will air on the Olympic Channel tonight at 8PM ET, with extended highlights also streaming on NBC Sports digital platforms.