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Sainz leads Dakar despite 3rd stage defeat

  • Story Highlights
  • Spain's Carlos Sainz retained the overall lead in the Dakar Rally on Monday
  • Lost the third stage to Qatar's BMW driver Nasser Al-Attiyah in Argentina
  • Spain's Marc Coma won the third motorcycle stage and has big overall lead
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(CNN) -- Spain's Carlos Sainz retained the overall lead in the Dakar Rally on Monday despite losing the third stage to Qatar's BMW driver Nasser Al-Attiyah in Argentina.

Sainz retained the overall lead in the Dakar Rally despite being beaten in the third stage in Argentina.

Sainz retained the overall lead in the Dakar Rally despite being beaten in the third stage in Argentina.

Al-Attiyah, who specializes in long-distance all-terrain rallies, also triumphed in Saturday's first stage and is now second overall after his latest success.

But he still trails twice former world champion Sainz's Volkswagen by three minutes 40 seconds following a 551km special stage from Puerto Madryn to Jacobacci.

Dieter Depping of Germany was third on Monday, 100 seconds adrift, while South African VW driver Giniel De Villiers was fourth -- and slipped to third in the standings five minutes 45 seconds behind Sainz.

Mitsubishi's Luc Alphand, winner in 2006, slipped back following technical problems.

Spain's Marc Coma won the third motorcycle stage as fellow KTM rider Cyril Despres, who won the event in 2005 and 2007, endured another nightmare.

Coma saw off KTM pair Norwegian Pal Anders Ullevalseter and Spaniard Jordi Viladoms by 17 minutes 49 seconds.

Despres is 33rd after a poor start and the Frenchman now trails Coma by more than an hour and a half.

Coma has established a lead of 39 minutes 11seconds lead over Frenchman David Fretigne (Yamaha) with Dutchman Frans Verhoeven (KTM) 41 minutes 14 seconds behind.

The 2009 edition of the Dakar was switched this year from Africa to Argentina and Chile because of security fears.

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