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    TYUMEN, January 9, 2004. /RIA Novosti correspondent/. The Russian team was placed second in the 8th stage of the Telefonica-Dakar 2004 rally in the truck class, spokesmen for the team competing on Russian-made Kamaz trucks, told RIA Novosti.

    Driver Vladimir Chagin finished several minutes after the stage winner Karel Loprais, driving a Tatra. Kamaz vehicles also came in fourth and fifth on this 393 kilometres long stage.

    Russia's Vladimir Chagin still leads in overall rankings. His time is 23:51:36 - 43 and a half minutes better than Brazil's de Azevedo, who is second in overall score.

    The 26th Paris-Dakar race kicked off on January 1 in France. This year the rally is contested by 563 drivers from 38 countries - 180 motorcyclists, 140 car teams and nearly 70 teams in the truck category. The race 11,000 kilometres long is to finish on January 18.

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