Updated: Saturday, 18 January 2014 02:09 | By Agence France-Presse

Peterhansel takes shock Dakar lead

Stephane Peterhansel snatched the lead on the Dakar Rally's penultimate stage on Friday, just 24 hours after his Mini team had ordered him to abandon his challenge.

Peterhansel takes shock Dakar lead

Mini's driver Stephane Peterhansel and co-driver Jean Paul Cottret, both of France, compete during the Stage 11 of the Dakar 2014 between Antofagasta and El Salvador, on January 16, 2014 - by Franck Fife

The French driver, who has six career wins in the motorcycling section of the gruelling marathon and five on four wheels, now looks certain to claim a 12th title on Saturday's final stage.

Overnight leader Nani Roma had a 5min 32sec advantage over his Mini teammate Peterhansel going into the 12th stage from El Salvador to La Serena in Chile.

And with Nasser Al-Attiyah in third, Mini ordered all three drivers to hold their positions on Friday to guarantee a team podium sweep.

But Roma lost pace throughout the day leaving Peterhansel with a 26-second overall lead going into Saturday's final 157km timed run into Valparaiso.

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