Dakar Rally Stage 10 complete- Women few scares- all through to penultimate Stage11

Dakar Rally Stage 10 complete- Women few scares- all through to penultimate Stage11

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Dakar Rally 2020 Women Competitors Media coverage brought to you by:

Dakar Rally Stage 10 is complete with all Women fending off Marathon Stage in Saudi Arabia’s area known as the ‘Empty Quarter’- meaning vast sea of sand the size of France.

With somewhat relief by all competitors, 2nd part of Special was cancelled due to insufficient resources to cover safety of riders along with high winds predicted, which allowed for greater time to recover from Stage incidents in preparation for pentultimate Stage 11 tomorrow.

Mirjam Pol Stage 10 Photo Credit: A.S.O

Mirjam Pol and Taye Perry experienced scary moment when dislodged from bike at pace, recovering to finish with minimal loss of time- Mirjam finishing in 35th place for 41st Overall and Taye now stands remarkable 49th Overall.

Mirjam: There was a very hard storm, and those dunes are very treacherous. You have a high speed plateau, it’s going back in a dune and that dune is going to stop three meters before the top!

‘I let my concentration weaken and then it went wrong! I don’t even know what exactly happened- I probably looked at my roadbook but in any case not good before me.’

‘I had to be full on the anchors but I was also right because I wasn’t going to save this one, then I would crash. I clapped with my head full on navigation and, with all my muscles tight, I clapped with my thighs along the tank!” Result torn thigh muscle and it will be painful to race in final Stages 11 and 12.

Taye Perry had moment as well, dropping bike half-way over sand dune, then spent next 20 minutes recovering to get going. Taye, not one to let mishaps get to her, kept mo-jo in tact and looks set to take out top female spot in ‘New Comers’ category currently standing 7th out of 23 Rookies.

Laia Sanz Stage 10 Photo Credit: A.S.O

Taye: ‘I am fine! Almost went off a dune face, luckily dropped bike on side and it broke the edge and me and bike slid half way down only. But lost very little time there….I couldn’t find a waypoint, Nasser also struggled, but we all eventually found it. I lost maybe 20 minutes there and then the race was stopped for safety reasons’.

Laia Sanz leads the charge for all 9 Women competitors who started the Dakar 11 days ago and are on their way to the Final Stages 11 and 12. Finishing in 21st place and ranked 17th Overall, Laia is amazingly 14 minutes off 15th place- a position the Spanish ‘Legend’ rider has in sight.

Laia: ‘I rode today’s stage with caution. The first day of a marathon stage is always important, and today, because I needed to look after my bike and also because I wanted to be safe, I took no risks. Luckily, the stage has been shortened for safety reasons. Apparently, there weren’t enough helicopters for the second part of the stage, probably due to the number of falls and accidents, so I’m happy to be fine’.

Kirsten Landman admits the speed factor in Dakar is way out of her comfort zone, preferring the hard enduro terrain, yet the South African rookie still pushes through and stands 55th Overall heading into 2nd Marathon Stage 11 tomorrow.

Sara Garcia has relied on all out self-belief to not only finish each Stage but also not yield to lack of sleep, fatigue and all out reduced energy competing as sole female in ‘Original by Motul’ category. Ranked 22nd Overall in category, Sara proves fact that her sheer sense of focus, determination, hard work and courage will get her across that Stage 12 finish line.

Sara Garcia #98 Stage 10 Photo Credit: ASO/ Marcelo Machado de Melo

In Car category, Cristina Gutierrez and co-driver Pablo Moreno welcomed change in race schedule as problem with left rear tyre was cause for concern as to- drop in energy levels:

Cristina: ‘The cancellation of the 2nd part of the special has favored us: we feared we could not continue because we had difficulties in the left rear wheel. Luckily the assistance truck brought the piece and we were able to replace it. In the absence of 2 stages, we begin to notice the tiredness although the desire to end the Dakar with a positive result is still there. More tomorrow! 🐢💨

Fernanda Kanno and co-driver Alonso Carillo completed yet another day to live Dakar Stage 11 tomorrow finishing in 61st and SSV dynamo duo Camelia Liparoti and Annett Fischer made race position all time high finishing in 28th place under ‘Dakar Experience’ category.

Dakar Rally Stage 11: Shubaytah to Haradh 744 kms with 379 kms timed. Header Photo: Taye Perry credit: Rallyzone.

Words: Sharon Cox.


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