Day two of the Dakar Rally today consisted of a 347-mile route from Narbonne, France, to Castellon Costa-Azahar on Spain’s northeast coast, with just one brief 19-mile special test on a vineyard-covered plateau. The stage was won by defending champion Richard Sainct, a Frenchman who switched from BMW to KTM in the off-season, while Spaniard Joan Roma (who made a mirror-image switch from KTM to BMW) taking second about a minute back. On the American front, Honda pilot Johnny Campbell finished fifth a little over a minute back, with BMW’s Jimmy Lewis taking 14th a bit over three minutes off the pace.
With yesterday’s miniscule four-mile special test thrown in, Sainct leads in the overall standings, 54 seconds ahead of Roma. Campbell is fifth at 1:13 back, and Lewis sits 12th at 3:12. Don’t expect to much of a shake-up in tomorrow’s standings: The special test is just three miles long.