Dakar Rally sixth stage cancelled after rains

La Paz: The sixth stage of the Dakar Rally morosports race has been cancelled after torrential rains in the Bolivian Andes mountains.

Most of the 786-km stage from Oruro to La Paz was made impassable by more than 12 hours of rain, officials said on Saturday, reports Xinhua news agency.

Bad weather also impacted Friday’s fifth stage, which was cut in half after several competitors were bogged down in mud and unable to finish the course before nightfall.

Defending champion Stephane Peterhansel of France leads the overall standings, one minute and nine seconds ahead of compatriot and follow Peugeot driver Sebastien Loeb.

Their fellow Peugeot driver Cyril Despres of France is third, four minutes and 54 seconds off the pace.

Britain’s Sam Sunderland heads the overall standings in the motorcycle category, 12 minutes in front of Chilean Pablo Quintanilla.

This year’s edition of the off-road race features 12 stages, covering more than 9,000 km in Paraguay, Bolivia and Argentina before ending in Buenos Aires on January 14.