Ekström Dominates Dakar Prologue

As the weeks-long Dakar Rally begins, competitors first have a sandy qualifying run just 27 km long run in Al’Ula dubbed “The Prologue” that took place today. Finish in the Top 10 today, and you to choose your starting position for the opening stage.

Fastest amongst the cars was Audi Sport’s Mattias Ekstrom with an impressive 16m 30s in his red-mirrored RS Q e-tron. That was 23 seconds faster than the next-fastest car, reigning FIA World Rally-Raid champion Seth Quintero’s Toyota Hilux.

Ekstrom’s teammate and 14-time Dakar winner Stephane Peterhansel finished in 7th, good enough to nab him control over his starting position for Stage 1.

Mattias Ekström

Carlos Sainz finished in 34th, which may sound like a lot but, in the end, just two minutes off of Ekstrom’s time.

Just how the Audi Sport will stack up in the 2024 competition remains to be seen. Ingolstadt has shared details on its updated RS Q e-tron E2 in order to better prepare it for its third year in Dakar competition. Also significant, the FIA World Rally-Raid Championship committee made a balance of power (BOP) adjustment in Audi’s favor that will see the three RS Q e-tron’s granted an additional 15kW ow power that nets out to about 21bhp extra.

For more coverage of the Dakar Rally, follow along with our coverage HERE.

Dakar 2024 – Prologue Top 10 Results:

1Mattias Ekstrom Audi16m30s 
2Seth Quintero  Toyota+0:23s  
3Sebastien Loeb Prodrive+0:38s 
4Marcos Baumgart  Prodrive+0:38s
5Cristian Baumgart  Prodrive+0:44s
6Krzysztof Holowczyc Mini+0:44s  
7Stephane Peterhansel Audi+0:45s 
8Lionel Baud Toyota+0:47s  
9Martin Prokop Ford+0:49s 
10Brian Baragwanath  Century+0:55s

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