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Short route forces Al-Attiyah to settle for second place in Dakar – three Hilux bakkies in top ten

Short route forces Al-Attiyah to settle for second place in Dakar – three Hilux bakkies in top ten

Riyadh – When the 12th and final stage of the Dakar Rally was shortened by 167 km due to security concerns, it effectively robbed last year’s winner, Nasser Al-Attiyah of his chance to catch the winner, Carlos Sainz.

Al-Attiyah competed as one of four Toyota teams in purpose-built Hilux bakkies from South Africa. Sainz again competed in a Mini, which often outpaced the Hiluxes in the earlier stages as the Mini can attain a higher top speed.

All four Hilux teams completed the rally with three ending in the top ten rankings.

In the final stage, Al-Attiyah and navigator Mathieu Baumel pushed their car very hard, eventually winning the stage but the time gain was not sufficient to close the gap between them and Sainz for the overall first position. Nevertheless, the number 1 Hilux team finished only 6 minutes 21 seconds behind Sainz in his Mini.

Al-Attiyah recorded the fastest time of the day, notching up the team’s second stage victory of the race and closing the gap by more than 3 minutes. This was good enough to fend off Mini’s Stephane Peterhansel, who had his eyes on the second place; but it was not fast enough to attain the top step of the podium. Had the stage been the intended length, Al-Attiyah/Baumel had a good chance of finishing victorious again.

“It was a tough fight,” said Al-Attiyah after the race finished in the entertainment complex of Qiddiyah, 40km from the city centre of Riyadh. “Unfortunately, we just lost too much time to punctures, a penalty and one navigational mistake. It cost us the victory, but we’ll be back to fight again next year.”

Dakar 2020, the 42nd edition of the world’s most gruelling endurance race, was held in Saudi Arabia. It ended on Friday 17 January on the outskirts of the capital, Riyadh.

2020 Dakar Rally Top Five after Stage 12 in the category for Cars:

1st – Carlos Sainz and Lucas Cruz in a Mini.

2nd Nasser Al-Attiyah and Mathieu Baumel in a Hilux.

3rd Stéphane Peterhansel and Paulo Fiuza in a Mini.

4th Yazeed Al Rajhi and Konstantin Zhiltsov, also in a Toyota but from a different team.

5th Giniel de Villiers and Alex Haro Bravo in a Hilux.


About The Author

SADC Correspondent

SADC correspondents are independent contributors whose work covers regional issues of southern Africa outside the immediate Namibian ambit. Ed.

Following reverse listing, public can now acquire shareholding in Paratus Namibia


20 February 2020, Windhoek, Namibia: Paratus Namibia Holdings (PNH) was founded as Nimbus Infrastructure Limited (“Nimbus”), Namibia’s first Capital Pool Company listed on the Namibian Stock Exchange (“NSX”).

Although targeting an initial capital raising of N$300 million, Nimbus nonetheless managed to secure funding to the value of N$98 million through its CPC listing. With a mandate to invest in ICT infrastructure in sub-Sahara Africa, it concluded management agreements with financial partner Cirrus and technology partner, Paratus Telecommunications (Pty) Ltd (“Paratus Namibia”).

Paratus Namibia Managing Director, Andrew Hall

Its first investment was placed in Paratus Namibia, a fully licensed communications operator in Namibia under regulation of the Communications Regulatory Authority of Namibia (CRAN). Nimbus has since been able to increase its capital asset base to close to N$500 million over the past two years.

In order to streamline further investment and to avoid duplicating potential ICT projects in the market between Nimbus and Paratus Namibia, it was decided to consolidate the operations.

Publishing various circulars to shareholders, Nimbus took up a 100% shareholding stake in Paratus Namibia in 2019 and proceeded to apply to have its name changed to Paratus Namibia Holdings with a consolidated board structure to ensure streamlined operations between the capital holdings and the operational arm of the business.

This transaction was approved by the Competitions Commission as well as CRAN, following all the relevant regulatory approvals as well as the necessary requirements in terms of corporate governance structures.

Paratus Namibia has evolved as a fully comprehensive communications operator in Namibia and operates as the head office of the Paratus Group in Africa. Paratus has established a pan-African footprint with operations in six African countries, being: Angola, Botswana, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa and Zambia.

The group has achieved many successes over the years of which more recently includes the building of the Trans-Kalahari Fibre (TKF) project, which connects from the West Africa Cable System (WACS) eastward through Namibia to Botswana and onward to Johannesburg. The TKF also extends northward through Zambia to connect to Dar es Salaam in Tanzania, which made Paratus the first operator to connect the west and east coast of Africa under one Autonomous System Number (ASN).

This means that Paratus is now “exporting” internet capacity to landlocked countries such as Zambia, Botswana, the DRC with more countries to be targeted, and through its extensive African network, Paratus is well-positioned to expand the network even further into emerging ICT territories.

PNH as a fully-listed entity on the NSX, is therefore now the 100% shareholder of Paratus Namibia thereby becoming a public company. PNH is ready to invest in the future of the ICT environment in Namibia. The public is therefore invited and welcome to acquire shares in Paratus Namibia Holdings by speaking to a local stockbroker registered with the NSX. The future is bright, and the opportunities are endless.