It has only taken until the second stage of the Dakar Rally for Fernando Alonso to find out the unforgiving nature of the iconic racing event.
After saying he planned on driving the first few stages “on tiptoes”, Alonso finished P11 in the mammoth opening stage on Sunday.
However, his fortunes did not improve during the second stage as he was forced to stop for more than two hours after his Toyota Hilux hit a rock and caused damage to the suspension and wheel.
Alonso, and his co-driver Marc Coma, attempted running repairs on the car but had to concede defeat and wait for Toyota’s recovery truck.
There was better luck for his fellow Toyota driver, Giniel de Villiers, who set the overall pace in stage two after suffering a slow puncture himself in the opening stage.
He moves up to P6 in the overall classification, while X-raid Mini driver Orlando Terranova is top of the standings in the Dakar’s car category in the general standings.
Carlos Sainz Senior is currently P2 overall with the Bahrain JCW Z-Raid team.