Mon, January 19, 2009
Sports > Popular News > Dakar 2009

Spaniard Coma takes motorcycles title in Dakar Rally

2009-01-18 06:22:19 GMT2009-01-18 14:22:19 (Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

BUENOS AIRES, Jan. 17 (Xinhua) -- Spain's Marc Coma wrapped up overall victory in the Dakar Rally motorcycles race after Saturday's final special stage.

South African De Villiers won the car section following a final227km special from Rioja to Cordoba to take the honours in the race's 30th edition.

KTM rider Coma, champion in 2006, suffered a bad fall on the final day in 2007 to lose out.

This year, he won the opening special on January 3 and then captured the third and fourth stages to put himself ahead of French title holder Cyril Despres, who endured tyre problems and a fall to see his challenge fade early on.

"It was a tough race," said Coma, who beat Despres by 1hr 25min38sec.

"There were so many race days and a lot of work so I'm really happy. We didn't know the terrain too well and so it was difficult to set down tactics."

This year's race was marred by the death of French rider Pascal Terry, who was found dead early on January 7 three days after he suffered an accident and disappeared during the second stage.

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