Team PETRONAS De Rooy IVECO got off to a flying start in the world’s toughest race, with Ton van Genugten, Federico Villagra and Gerard de Rooy finishing in the Top 4.
The 41st edition of the rally raid began with the first timed stage between the Peruvian cities of Lima and Pisco, which saw the 334 trucks that went through the starting ramp compete on 84 kilometers of sand.
Team PETRONAS De Rooy IVECO succeeded in placing three of its IVECO Powerstar trucks in the first four in this short stage that broke the ice. Ton van Genugten rounded off a great performance that placed him 18 seconds behind the day’s winner, Eduard Nikolaev, at the end of the stage.
Argentine Federico Villagra finished third in the podium, just 53 seconds after the lead, having maintained his position in the fastest three throughout the day.
In his comeback after last year’s victory at the Africa Eco Race 2018, Gerard de Rooy, finished the stage in fourth position, 1m44s behind the lead, in this first short special.
Maurik Van Den Heuvel, who joins Team PETRONAS De Rooy IVECO for the first time, finished in 18th position, 17m19s behind the leaders in the fourth IVECO Powerstar.
The second stage will take place between Pisco and San Juan de Marcona, where crews will continue to navigate the difficult Peruvian dunes in a long day with 342 timed kilometers.
STANDINGS – STAGE 1 AND OVERALL
|1.||Eduard Nikolaev ||(Kamaz)||
Ton Van Genugten||
Federico Villagra ||
Gerard de Rooy ||
|5.||Dmitry Sotnikov ||(Kamaz)||
Maurik Van Den Heuvel ||