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Stage 7: Laia Sanz, only woman in the race

08/01/2012
The reigning Dakar Women’s Champion comes to the rest day with her injured hand almost completely recovered. Her target now is to achieve a good position in the general.
The relatively quiet day for the Dakar Rally competitors yesterday, due to the cancellation of the special time trial, was good for Laia Sanz. It was a relief for her hand, now much recovered from the injury she suffered when she fell in the fourth stage, and she was able to ride with few troubles.

Laia, the only woman still in the race in the motorbike class, crossed the finishing line of the seventh stage in 48th place, which lifts her by 6 to 51st place in the general classification. As she said, the fearsome Copiapó – Copiapó loop “was not as hard as I expected”. “In fact, this was the first day when everything went well and I really enjoyed it. At the beginning we couldn’t go very fast because we were on a track and there was a lot of dust, but after the refuelling we came to the desert and I could overtake several riders without a problem. I am pleased because the day went well and my hand is much better”.

With the women’s trophy in the bag, Laia wants above all to get through to the end and finish in the best place possible, but without making mistakes: “The idea is to work up through the ranking bit by bit and I don’t want to go faster than I have to. Starting a few places higher we shall already be a bit quicker than today because there will be fewer people in front to hold us back. Marc and I are doing what we have to do and this is how we will continue”.

Marc Guasch came 49th in this stage and is now 52nd in the general classification. The Gas Gas rider said he was confident with the team after the first week of competition: “We are working well and we have to continue in the same way. Although the first days were very demanding, tomorrow is the rest day and we can gather our forces ready to face the last week of competition”.

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