2004 Paris-Dakar Rally update

DAKAR STAGE 9 UPDATEThe remaining American Red Bull KTM Dakar Team of Larry Roeseler and Paul Krause are working hard and climbing up the ranks. Roeseler finished the 793 km stage in twelfth position, which brought him up to sixteenth overall. While Krause did great, his in twenty-fifth place finish leaves him in twenty-second position overall.According to www.dakar.com and KTM's press website to www.ktmpress.com, the motorcycle class got a rest day on Monday after having their bikes loaded onto trucks and driven to Bamako, Mali's capitol, while they got flew to the city. The cars and truck teams drove themselves to Bamako, a "liaison" in rally-lingo. The primary motivation came from security threats on the rally; and the organization canceled the next two Nema-Mopti and Mopti-Bobo Dioulasso stages. On Tuesday they will start as planned on the 12th stage from Dioulasso to Bamako.Winfried Kerschhaggl, KTM's head of marketing, imagines that there is at least one further reason for the cancellation of the stages. "After three difficult successive stages the harshness of the rally has become obvious today. We are talking about strains that brought the riders to their limits. Most of the private riders overextended themselves. The official's decision to neutralize the next two days is only right. It will keep up the standards of the race."This harshness Kerschhaggl was talking about could also be seen among the KTM teams. At first Scot Harden crashed and broke his left ankle. A while later, Jean Brucy broke his right collarbone and dropped out of the race. "The crash wasn't that bad at all. I simply fell in a stupid way."