Mirjam Pol speaks on what it takes to race Dakar Rally

Mirjam Pol has to be admired for her sense of pride, humble in racing 7 Dakar’s albeit fierce in determination that each Dakar is new experience to learn, make improvements and with little bit of luck- enjoy!

Mirjam Pol Dakar Rally 2020 Bike category Photo Credit: ASO

In Mirjam’s words ‘it is not easy to explain to people why I compete in Dakar- with broken arm for example in 2018, or why I would want to do it all again the following year’.

For Mirjam, rookies race Dakar for the adventure, the challenge to race most grueling event over many days, covering terrain not marked testing navigation skills along with physical ability to make it to the finish.

For Mirjam, now racing her 8th Dakar it is so much more. Planning, preparation and gaining sponsorship starts straight after Dakar has finished for following year. All of which is not only her career but a hard-won honour which raises profile of Women competing on level playing field as male competitors in same class.

And that brings the spirit of Dakar into focus. No-sporting event equals the supportive nature that competitors show for fellow racers during the whole event. And, Mirjam showed this exact trait during Stage 3 making decision to help stranded rider by giving up her satellite phone- not only losing valuable race time, but also placing her way back in start position the following day.

Mirjam Pol Stage 4 Dakar Rally 2020 Photo Credit: ASO

Such is Mirjam Pol and The Dakar.

I caught up with Mirjam pre-racing Dakar Rally 2020 asking her thoughts on what it takes to race Dakar. The audio interview has been put together to give viewers insight on Mirjam as the person she is: grateful to race Dakar, knowledgeable above years and committed to breaking mould that Women can compete in most physical test of endurance on a bike.

Header photo: Mirjam Pol Stage 5 Credit: ASO.

Words: Sharon Cox.

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