CYPRESS, CALIFORNIA – Robby Gordon has proven once again why he is a true motorsports champion, not just by winning, but dominating Stage 12 of the Dakar™.  After a long delay set him back during Stage 11 due to mechanical problems, the American driver attacked Stage 12 with a vengeance.  He piloted his #303 SPEED Energy / Toyo Tires HUMMER from a 22nd starting position to first overall – beating the second place finisher by 15 minutes, 18 seconds!  To further prove a point, he accomplished that feat by crossing the perilously soft coastal dunes toward Nazca, Peru — streaking past stuck competitors with his two-wheel drive HUMMER equipped with Toyo® Open Country M/T®-R tires.

The 245km Stage 12 travelled north along the Peruvian coast from Arequipa to Nazca.  This marks Gordon’s second stage win in the 2012 Dakar, having also won Stage 9.  Gordon now has six podium finishes in the 2012 version of this Pan American marathon rally.  It also shows his determination to finish on the podium in Lima, Peru.

Gordon’s teammate Nasser Al-Attiyah was forced to retire during Stage 9 due to mechanical problems.  Prior to his retirement, Al-Attiyah and his Toyo Tires equipped #300 Qatar HUMMER won Stages 2 and 7, and finished third in Stage 3.  So far in the 2012 Dakar, Toyo Tires has logged four stage wins and captured a total of nine podium finishes.

“Robby Gordon has proven today why Toyo Tires considers him a champion,” said Amy Coleman, senior director of marketing, Toyo Tire U.S.A. Corp.  “He has the ability to put adversity in his mirrors, while also demonstrating the winning capabilities of our Open Country M/T-R tires.”

Gordon currently sits in fourth overall in the Dakar with two days of racing left before finishing in Lima.  Saturday’s 275km Stage 13 continues along the edge of the Pacific, running from Nazca to Pisco.  Sunday’s Stage 14 will lead competitors from Pisco to Lima, the capitol of Peru where thousands of fans will greet the competitors.

Highlights of the Dakar are broadcast in the U.S. each night on the NBC Sports Network (formerly known as Versus) at 1:30am EST (10:30pm PST.)  Please check your local listings on where to find the NBC Sports Network.


Be sure to follow the daily action on the Dakar Rally Blog located at www.toyotires.com/dakar-rally-blog.  To learn more about Robby Gordon and the Open Country line of light truck tires, log onto www.toyotires.com.  Toyo Tires manufactures and distributes a complete line of premium replacement tires for nearly every make and model including high performance cars, luxury vehicles, light trucks and SUVs as well as tires for commercial trucks.  Connect with the community at www.facebook.com/toyotires and www.twitter.com/toyotires.

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