31 May

How CL will look if Uefa ignore league standings with Chelsea OUT but Arsenal IN

first_imgUEFA are considering using their coefficients to determine who plays in the Champions League next season.With the top leagues across Europe all suspended due to coronavirus and no clear indication when they will be completed, the governing body are making plans to sort out who qualifies for next season.4 Arsenal will be celebrating if Uefa use their coefficient system to determine who gets into the Champions LeagueCredit: Getty Images – Getty4And, as revealed by SunSport, rather than looking at current league standings or waiting for the leagues to all be completed, they could instead use their coefficient system to choose.That would mean Chelsea, currently fourth in the Premier League and therefore on course to qualify, would miss out but – incredibly – ninth-placed Arsenal would get in.For the Champions League, 26 teams qualify for the group stages automatically each season with the remaining six slots made up by the play-offs.So, who would be the 26 clubs to definitely make it through to the Champions League groups for the 2020/21?ENGLAND – 4Liverpool, Manchester United, Arsenal, TottenhamChampions-elect and runaway Premier League leaders Liverpool are safely in with a coefficient of 99 points.Manchester City are actually England’s highest-ranked club on 112 but their two-year Uefa ban means, as things stand, they will not be allowed to compete next season.Rivals Manchester United jump up to second with 92, just ahead of Arsenal who are tenth across all of Europe on 91 – that is despite the Gunners not playing in the Champions League since 2016/17.With City banned, Spurs are the beneficiaries as they nick the fourth English spot on.Last season’s beaten finalists have a score of 85, two better than Chelsea who miss out even though they are higher in the league table than three of the other clubs who would get in and beat Arsenal in last year’s Europa League final.Therefore, Frank Lampard’s side would have to settle for a Europa League spot alongside third-placed Leicester and Wolves, with Sheffield United missing out completely.SPAIN – 4Real Madrid, Atletico Madrid, Barcelona, SevillaReal Madrid top the Uefa coefficient system with a whopping 134, helped by the fact they have won the Champions League three times in the years taken into consideration.Barcelona (124) are third, behind Atletico Madrid (126) who were beaten finalists in 2016.That means Diego Simeone’s side – currently sixth in LaLiga – ‘steal’ Real Sociedad’s place in next season’s competition with the Basque side on just nine coefficient points.Sevilla are third in the league as things stand and 11th on the Uefa standings so take the final Spanish spot.GERMANY – 4Bayern Munich, Borussia Dortmund, Bayer Leverkusen, SchalkeUnsurprisingly, Bayern Munich on 123 are Germany’s top club with Borussia Dortmund second on 85.But despite sitting third and fourth in the Bundesliga table respectively, RB Leipzig and Borussia Monchengladbach are out – even though Julian Nagelsmann’s side have booked their quarter-final spot this season already.In their place come fifth-placed Bayer Leverkusen and sixth-placed Schalke.4ITALY – 4Juventus, Roma, Napoli, LazioJuventus, beaten in the 2017 final, are well out in front on 115 points.But just like in Germany, the clubs in fifth and sixth sneak in at the expense of two of the top four.Roma and Napoli are in the Europa League spots in Serie A but due to their recent success in the Champions League, they get in ahead of Inter Milan and Atalanta, who like Leipzig are into the final eight.Lazio sit one point adrift of Juve at the league’s summit and claim the fourth Italian spot.FRANCE – 3Paris Saint-Germain, Lyon, MonacoPSG have 105 points in the Uefa coefficient and breeze in.But in France it is Marseille and Rennes who will feel hard done by.That is because Lyon and Monaco, in seventh and ninth respectively on 40 points, have higher gradings in Europe due to their performances over the last five seasons.RUSSIA – 2Zenit, CSKA MoscowIn Russia, league-leaders Zenit make a safe entry on 64 points.But it is CSKA Moscow who are fifth in the league that take the second spot ahead of Krasnodar and Lokomotiv Moscow.PORTUGAL – 1PortoJust like in the Primeira Liga, Porto will pip Benfica to the Champions League spot.Porto are on 75 with rivals Benfica on 70 in the coefficient and have a one-point advantage in the league.UKRAINE – 1Shakhtar DonetskA relatively simple and straightforward one in Ukraine.Shakhtar Donetsk have picked up more coefficient ranking points than any other side in each of the last five years and cruise in, just as they are cruising the league again.BELGIUM – 1GentIt is a close call in Belgium.Gent have 39.5 points, Anderlecht have 36 so it is Gent who get in.And that is ignoring the fact that Club Brugge – who got a 2-2 draw at the Bernabeu this season – are 15 points clear at the top of the table.TURKEY – 1BesiktasBesiktas may be fifth in the typically-competitive Super Lig but they are the Turkish side that get in.Their 54 points put them well clear in the Uefa rankings of Fenerbahce, Galatasaray and Istanbul Basaksehir, who trail Trabzonspor on goal difference at the top of the league.Latest Champions League newsREF RELEASEDChampions League ref Vincic released by cops after arrest in prostitution raidREF RAIDChampions League ref Vincic ‘arrested in raid into drugs and prostitution ring’CITY SITUATIONChampions Lg & Europa Lg to be played in ONE host city from quarters onwardREDS TEST2005 Champions League final quiz – How well do you remember Istanbul 15 years on?CRYING SHAMEPoch couldn’t stop crying after CL final as he talks for first time since axeEUR JOKINGCity, Chelsea & Man U’s dreams in jeopardy as govt impose quarantine on arrivalsRevealedLUK RAN OUTLukaku says he will NEVER forgive Chelsea flop AVB for 2012 Champ League axeRevealedRUSSIAN ROULETTEMan Utd’s 2008 Champions League Moscow heroes and where they are nowAUSTRIA – 1Red Bull SalzburgThe last team to sneak in automatically would be Red Bull Salzburg on 53.5 points, more than double that of nearest rivals Rapid Vienna in Austria.That is despite the fact Manchester United’s Europa League opponents LASK lead the Austrian Bundesliga by three points.4Arsenal could clinch Champions League spot thanks to sneaky backdoor route despite being ninth in Premier Leaguelast_img read more

18 Jan

Muntinlupa advances to MPBL Finals

first_imgCarpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award P16.5-M worth of aid provided for Taal Volcano eruption victims — NDRRMC Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew Muntinlupa-Angelis Resort got an unlikely lift from seldom used forward Dhon Reverente as it turned back Paranaque-Gamboa Coffee, 81-70, Tuesday night to forge a title showdown with Batangas City-Tanduay in the MPBL Anta Rajah Cup at Muntinlupa Sports Complex.With Muntinlupa’s season on the line, Reverente came off the bench to collect 12 points and 12 rebounds as the Cagers fought back from a 14-point deficit in the second quarter to prevail in the do-or-die clash.ADVERTISEMENT Jo Koy draws ire for cutting through Cebu City traffic with ‘wang-wang’ Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Jiro Manio arrested for stabbing man in Marikina Scientists seek rare species survivors amid Australia flames Truck driver killed in Davao del Sur road accident Judy Ann’s 1st project for 2020 is giving her a ‘stomachache’ League founder and Sen. Manny Pacquiao has dangled a P1 million prize for the champion team with the losing finalist getting P500,000.Meanwhile, Makati became the latest city to join the MPBL in its expansion in the next conference, following the entry of San Juan, Pasig, Laguna, Manila and Rizal.MPBL commissioner Kenneth Duremdes said the league is now up to 16 teams with more clubs from Visayas and Mindanao joining the tournament. The next MPBL conference is tentatively set June 12.ADVERTISEMENT Ex-pro Chito Jaime scored 22 points, while former Mapua Cardinal Allan Mangahas added 18 that went with six rebounds and five assists for the Cagers, who travel to Batangas City on Thursday to face the top-seeded Athletics in Game 1 of the best-of-five championship series.“I’m just happy all our hard work paid off,” said Muntinlupa coach Aldrin Morante. “We really had to dig deep in this series and I’m glad my players delivered.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSAfter winning title, time for LA Tenorio to give back to Batangas folkSPORTSTim Cone, Ginebra set their sights on elusive All-Filipino crownIt was an impressive turnaround for the Cagers after they lost Game 1, 84-59, before taking the next two games and the last finals berth.Batangas will still host Game 2, before the series goes to Muntinlupa for Game 3 and, if necessary, Game 4. MOST READ La Salle seals Final 4 bonus Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. LATEST STORIES Nadine Lustre’s phone stolen in Brazil Green group flags ‘overkill’ use of plastic banderitas in Manila Sto. Niño feast View commentslast_img read more

18 Jan

Gov’t Resists Convicted Mercenary Appeal

first_imgThe Government of Liberia on Monday, June 16 filed a 13-count response to the defense motion seeking a new trial for 13 persons convicted of mercenarism by Jurors of Criminal Court ‘D.’Jurors on June 10 brought down a guilty verdict against the defendants for their involvement in mercenary activities in neighboring La Côte d’Ivoire, where several persons including seven UN peacekeepers were allegedly ambushed and killed.However, the defendants’ lawyers pleaded with the Court to reject the jurors’ verdict and declare a new trial in the matter.Interestingly, Judge Emery Paye will now be compelled to reschedule his final judgment that was scheduled for Tuesday, June 17, and rule on the defense motion, a common request when convictions are appealed.Instead, the Criminal Court Judge has scheduled hearing of the request for a new trial on Tuesday, June 17.The prosecution’s response among others, said the jurors took into consideration  testimonies including those of the rebuttal witnesses, specifically Roland Garwo, who testified that he crossed the defendants in his canoe following their attacked in La Côte d’Ivoire.They further said that some of the witnesses, like Thomas Glaider, Pascal Kollie and Baryee Gaye corroborated each other and hence, the jurors having tried the fact could not hesitate but to arrive at a guilty verdict.They argued that Gaye  pointed to the fact that the defendants had based in Garlo’s Town and others including the Thai forest and controlled areas in that sisterly nation.They went further to say that one of their witnesses, Inspector Savior Howard visited the crime scene, as opposed to the defense lawyers claim that none of the investigators, whose findings led to the indictment of the defendants visited the crime scene in both Liberia and La Côte d’Ivoire.They also argued that Witness Gaye, when he testified named weapons like M-60, RPG and AK-47, as  guns used by the defendants to fight in La Côte d’Ivoire.Prosecution prayed the court not to disturb the unanimous verdict of the jurors, whom they claimed,  listened  attentively and  took note of the testimonies of all their witnesses including Prince Barclay  as well as the defendants  mere denial.They maintained that the defense request constitutes total disrespect for the integrity of the jurors.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

14 Jan

Jones: ‘Give Me a Chance To Lead, And I Will Be Your Servant’

first_imgFormer Executive Governor of the Central Bank of Liberia (CBL), Dr. J. Mills Jones, has called on Liberians to give him the chance to lead Liberia as president during the upcoming 2017 elections. “Give me a chance to lead, and I will be your servant,” Dr. Jones said in a statement on Wednesday. “Liberia’s interest will be my interest. I will be president for all Liberians. It will be a tough fight, but I am prepared to carry the cross.” He made the statement at an appreciation dinner at the Paynesville City Hall on Wednesday, May 25, held on behalf of Liberians who gave him their support during his tenure as Governor of the Central Bank of Liberia.It can be recalled that Dr. Jones was criticized by some sections of Liberians for the CBL microloan scheme that empowered small Liberian businesses that evidently improved his relationship with locals throughout the country. His critics said he was using state resources to feed his own political ambition, calling it a waste of resources. But the Governor insists that giving back to the Liberian people is not a waste.He however said that a good leader must have the will to stand up for the people and encourage them to remain focused and calm under pressure to implement change in the nation’s interest.That evening, for the first time ever, Dr. Jones announced publicly his political direction. “I have decided to give a positive response to the desire of a cross-section of our citizens that I should contest for the position of President of Liberia in 2017. Your desire is now our desire. I will be your candidate,” Dr. Jones declared. His statement comes a week following his acceptance of a petition to contest the 2017 general and presidential elections by a group of Liberians under the banner “United Liberians Concerned About the Future” at his Marshall residence in Margibi County last Saturday.The former CBL boss said his fate is in the hands of Almighty God, who has brought him from a humble beginning to this day. “We mortals can only express or wish. Only God Almighty has the final say. So I say to the people of Liberia that, God willing, I will provide the leadership thatwill put Liberia on a new course of economic, political and social transformation.“I will bring this leadership to the Executive Mansion; so when I promise to provide leadership that is different from the business-as-usual ways that have been the standard approach of the political establishment, that promise is based on my record at CBL,” he said.Dr. Jones said although not everyone will agree on everything that he did; however, a fair assessment of his performance will show that he demonstrated vision – though outside of the box – to bring about transformation by changing the living condition of Liberians. “And to those who say we were using public resources to do what we did, I say, yes,” he stated. “And if all in the public service were using public resources to help the people rise out of poverty, Liberia would be a better place. And those who want to criticize us for promoting policies that have helped to lift our fathers and mothers, our sisters and brothers out of poverty, to keep the poor school teacher or health worker from traveling out of their counties sometimes in the rain to cash their salary checks, I say you are only demonstrating the limitations of your own minds.” The Liberian banker said he will work to nurture a stable democracy, as well as bind the wounds of injustice, distrust, and alienation that continue to tear apart the fabric of Liberia’s democracy. Dr. Jones told the gathering that it is now time for the real people who have the country at heart to take over so as to revive the hope of the vast majority of Liberians who continue to live in abject poverty.He cautioned his compatriots to stand firm in the midst of suppression, but said the creator of the universe will not let the oppressors to succeed.“The growing waves of chronic corruption, nepotism and deception; those emphasizing these vices shall be stripped and those in the valley of poverty shall be lifted up and that mountain of false fight, misrule and incompetence shall be made ruined,” said Dr. Jones.He assured Liberians that a new day is coming for a new Liberia to be born and as such, they should stand firm and tall in order to achieve their desires.He said: “We will surely win the forthcoming election.”Dr. Jones said during his administration, healthcare delivery system, education and the economy will top his agenda.He added that his government will make Liberia more prosperous and politically stable, that all Liberians irrespective of tribe, social and religious background will have equal opportunity during his regime.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

29 Dec

DONEGAL WRITER’S MUSINGS ON BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN ON RTE RADIO

first_imgLetterkenny writer Denise Blake will be broadcast tomorrow, Sunday, as part of the very popular morning show, Sunday Miscellany.Denise is a regular contributor to the show and the producer, Cliodhna Ní Anlauain asked her recently to write a piece that could be broadcast after Bruce Springsteen’s Wrecking Ball Tour in Dublin.Denise recorded the script in the Rte Studios, Donnybrook,  during the week and it will be broadcast this Sunday morning. Recent Listenership numbers recorded Sunday Miscellany with 256,000 listeners. DONEGAL WRITER’S MUSINGS ON BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN ON RTE RADIO was last modified: July 21st, 2012 by BrendaShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:DONEGAL WRITER’S MUSINGS ON BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN ON RTE RADIOlast_img read more

29 Dec

FRIENDS WON’T BE WEIGHED DOWN BY THEIR DONEGAL CATCH!

first_imgThe friends pose after salvaging the anchor from The Mall in Ballyshannon. Pic by Kenneth McDonagh.An anchor which is understood to be up to 150 years old was pulled from the water at the Mall, Ballyshannon yesterday.The anchor is believed to be from the time of the wooden ships and was built between 1800 and 1900.The anchor was passed on to the Ballyshannon museum who will have it on display in the coming weeks after they preserve it. Freinds Paul Gallagher, Pierce Harte, Micky Doherty and Eddie Mc Fadden all posed with the anchor after helping to salvage it.A real Donegal Catch if ever there was one! FRIENDS WON’T BE WEIGHED DOWN BY THEIR DONEGAL CATCH! was last modified: July 29th, 2013 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:anchorBallyshannonThe Malllast_img read more

25 Dec

JUNIOR HEALTH MINISTER TAKES ILL DURING VISIT TO LETTERKENNY GENERAL

first_imgJunior Health Minister Kathleen Lynch has been admitted to the intensive care unit of Letterkenny General Hospital after collapsing.Kathleen LynchMinister Lynch was visiting the flooded hospital in Co Donegal this morning and was due to speak at the MacGill Summer School in Glenties today.However Ms Lynch complained of feeling unwell while touring the hospital. Consultant Gerry Lane, who was with Ms Lynch at the time, immediately took her into his care and she has ben placed in the intensive care unit.There is no up-to-date statement on Ms Lynch’s condition at present.Seantor Jimmy Harte, who was also with Ms Lynch, said he wished her a speedy recovery.“Kathleen seemed to be in fine form but she suddenly complained that she wasn’t feeling well. “Dr Gerry Lane immediately made a decision and took her into the care of the hospital.“She could not be in better hands and we wish her well,” he said.Ms Lynch was also accompanied by her husband Bernard during the visit to the hospital.It is believed that Ms Lynch has suffered from septicemia in the past and also took ill on holiday before.  JUNIOR HEALTH MINISTER TAKES ILL DURING VISIT TO LETTERKENNY GENERAL was last modified: July 31st, 2013 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:HEALTH MINISTERillKathleen Lynchletterkenny hospitallast_img read more

25 Dec

Sedan’s driver, 18, killed as SUV jumps the median

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREBlues bury Kings early with four first-period goals The SUV hit the BMW broadside on its driver’s side, then flipped over, witnesses said. The death was the 79th on Antelope Valley roads and highways so far this year, making this the second-deadliest ever with almost three weeks still to go. The record for traffic fatalities was 87, set in 2003. Seventy-four people died in 2004. Charles F. Bostwick, (661) 267-5742 chuck.bostwick@dailynews.com PALMDALE – A Lancaster teenager was fatally injured when an SUV whose driver was distracted by his toddler son jumped a Sierra Highway median, ran a red light and hit the teen’s sports sedan, authorities said. Eighteen-year-old Miguel Montoya died at a hospital about five hours after the 8:10 p.m. Saturday crash, officials said. Twenty-one-year-old Issac Vides of Palmdale and his 2-year-old son were flown by helicopter to UCLA Medical Center but neither was believed to be seriously injured, sheriff’s deputies said. Montoya’s passenger, 24-year-old Ismael Esparza, also went to a hospital but was not believed to be seriously injured, deputies said. Deputies said Vides’ 2002 Nissan Xterra had been driving north on Sierra Highway when Vides turned around to look at his son in the back seat. As he turned around, the SUV veered across the raised median and into the southbound lanes, then into Avenue M against the red light. The SUV hit Montoya’s 1999 BMW as the car was making a left turn on a green arrow from westbound Avenue M, deputies said. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

19 Dec

SA’s eighth World Heritage Site

first_img29 June 2007The Richtersveld Cultural and Botanical Landscape has become the eighth South African site to be inscribed on the World Heritage List of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (Unesco) as a place of “outstanding value to humanity”. The site was listed during the 31st session of Unesco’s World Heritage Committee in New Zealand on Wednesday.World Heritage in South AfricaDid you know that the Vredefort Dome is the largest and oldest visible meteor impact crater in the world? Or that the Drakensberg has Africa’s richest concentration of rock art? SA is home to eight Unesco World Heritage sites, places of “outstanding value to humanity”.Already listed are SA’s Cape Floral Region, Cradle of Humankind, Isimangaliso Wetlands Park (formerly the Greater St Lucia Wetlands Park), Mapungubwe Cultural Landscape, uKhahlamba-Drakensberg Park, Robben Island and Vredefort Dome.The Richtersveld Cultural and Botanical Landscape covers 160 000 hectares of dramatic mountainous desert in the north-west part of South Africa. A unique feature of the site – both in South African and international terms – is that it is owned and managed by a community that until recently had very little to call its own.Characterised by extreme temperatures, the communally run landscape affords a semi-nomadic pastoral livelihood for the Nama people, descendants of the Khoi-Khoi people who once occupied lands across southern Namibia and most of the present-day Western and Northern Cape provinces of South Africa.A century or more back, the Khoi-Khoi were pushed north by the spread of farms from the Cape. A few years ago, the Richtersveld area was returned to the ownership of the Nama under South Africa’s land restitution programme.Today the Nama live in three small villages, established as mission settlements outside the proclaimed area: Kuboes to the north, Lekkersing to the south-west, and Eksteenfontein to the south. The seasonal migration of the Nama between stock-posts with traditional demountable mat-roofed houses reflect a practice, once widespread over southern Africa, which has persisted for at least two millennia – the Nama being its last practitioners.“The extensive communal grazed lands bear testimony to the land management processes which have ensured the protection of the succulent Karoo vegetation,” the World Heritage Committee said in a statement. “This demonstrates a harmonious interaction between people and nature.”Source: BuaNewslast_img read more

18 Dec

SA’s proud Dakar record enhanced

first_imgThree stages after their mishap, on the sixth race day, they were called upon to stop and help Brazilians Mauricio Neves and Clecio Maestrelli after they were involved in a multiple rollover in the fifth factory Race Touareg. Neves suffered several broken ribs and De Villiers waited until medical help arrived. “This was a Dakar where nothing went right for us – we had eight punctures on top of everything else – but we look ahead to the next Dakar and will be putting everything we can into preparing ourselves for the new challenges that lie ahead.” It was also the closest finish ever in the car category, with the 2 minute 48 seconds gap between Sainz and Al-Attiyah equivalent to a distance of just 3.73 kilometres. It was a fast Dakar with Sainz recording an average speed of 101.8 km/h for the 4 800 km of special stages. “While we are proud to be members of the winning Volkswagen team, we are naturally very disappointed,” said the 37-year-old from Stellenbosch. “All the training and preparation over the past 12 months, including my successful recuperation from back surgery, was not rewarded with the success we had worked so hard to achieve. Nasser-Al Attiyah of Qatar and German co-driver Timo Gottschalk were second in the closest finish yet seen in the car category of the Dakar – 2 minutes and 12 seconds behind their Volkswagen team-mates. Miller and Pitchford were 32 minutes and 51 seconds in arrears at the finish. Disappointed but pleased“We were disappointed to finish third, but pleased for Volkswagen,” said the 47-year-old Pitchford, who hails from Woodmead in Gauteng. “1-2-3 is an awesome result that Volkswagen richly deserves. SAinfo reporter “This is a great team with a lot of motivated and talented people. Congratulations to Carlos and Nasser. They were in a class of their own this time.” Defending champions’ problemsDefending champions De Villiers and Von Zitzewitz lost all chance of repeating their 2009 triumph when they experienced electrical problems on their Race Touareg on the third race day and had to wait almost three hours for assistance from their support truck. From then on they were required to play a support role to their team-mates, carrying additional spares and having to stop and render assistance when needed. The disappointment of defeatIt was a race in which the South African off road champion of 2001 once again had to deal with the disappointment of defeat as he had done in Dakar 2007 in Africa when he was stopped by an under-bonnet fire while comfortably leading. Volkswagen claimed an historic and emphatic 1-2-3 finish and a second consecutive victory after the success of De Villiers and German co-driver Dirk von Zitzewitz in last year’s event. Miller and Pitchford were second in 2009. WinnersSpain’s Carlos Sainz and Lucas Cruz won their first Dakar Rally after 14 days and over 9 000 km of driving, completing the 14 special stages and 4 800 km of racing in a time of 47 hours and 10 minutes. center_img ‘Water carriers’“From special stage four until the finish we were the ‘water carriers’. Our job was to assist our team-mates still in with a chance of winning the race and we carried lots of spares, making us around 150 kilograms heavier than the others. South Africa’s proud record in the Dakar Rally, the world’s toughest motor sport event, was enhanced in Argentina and Chile in 2010 by Ralph Pitchford and Giniel de Villiers. Another South African, Alfie Cox – for many years a leading challenger in the motorcyle category – saw his race end early when he crashed into a ravine in his Nissan Navara on 7 January. Volkswagen’s dominance was illustrated by the fact that their closest challengers were the French pairing of nine-time Dakar champion Stephane Peterhansel (six wins on motorcycles and three in cars) and Jean-Paul Cottret in a BMW X3, who completed the marathon race two hours, 17 minutes and 21 seconds behind the winners. “It was hard to maintain our motivation under these circumstances and we certainly felt disheartened at times. But that is how it works. We were part of a team, the best team in the Dakar for the second year in a row, and it was our turn to assist as others did for us in 2009. Stage winsFor the record, Volkswagen won the most stages (seven) with Al-Attiyah taking four, Sainz two and Miller one. Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SAinfo material 19 January 2010 They eventually finished a creditable seventh, 5 hours 10 minutes 19 seconds behind Sainz and Cruz. Pitchford, the 2009 South African off road champion co-driver, served as American Mark Miller’s navigator as they placed third overall in their Volkswagen Race Touareg in the 32nd edition of the famous race on the weekend. True to form, he dealt with the disappointment with the same grace and humility with which he handled his historic win last year, the first by a South African in this famous race.last_img read more