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Orlando Terranova wins stage 12 of the Dakar Rally in Argentina

Orlando Terranova wins stage 12 of the Dakar Rally as Nasser Al-Attiyah closes in on his second title.

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Nasser Al-Attiyah is just 393 kilometres from a second Dakar Rally title after successfully negotiating stage 12 on Friday, with Orlando Terranova taking the stage win.

The Qatari extended his overall lead in the race to 35 minutes and 39 seconds on the route from Termas Rio Hondo to Rosario, the Mini driver finishing fourth on the day.

Al-Attiyah's main aim for the 298km special stage was to stay out of trouble and ensure his car made it to the end of the route, leaving only Saturday's final stage between him and the victory.

Terranova recorded his fourth stage win of the 2015 race as he crossed the line in three hours, four minutes and six seconds, edging out Vladimir Vasilyev by 30secs.

A patient start to the penultimate day ensured the Argentine was ready for one final push, and he executed it perfectly in his most successful race to date.

Despite his win on Friday, Terranova trails his Mini team-mate by over seven hours in the overall standings after a disastrous stage four earlier in the race.

Vasilyev was unable to replicate his win on stage five, but he remains in the top five with a three-minute advantage over his nearest rival.

Emiliano Spataro (+1:29s) claimed third place on Friday, with Al-Attiyah finishing just ahead of Bernhard Ten Brinke (+1:50s).

Al-Attiyah extended his overall advantage over Giniel de Villiers and is firmly on course to follow up his 2011 triumph when the competitors head to Buenos Aires on Saturday.

Third place looks sewn up already for Krzysztof Holowczyc. He is one hour, 31 minutes and 51 seconds behind Al-Attiyah but fourth-placed Erik van Loon is a further hour and a half adrift.

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