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Men looks at brighter side of Dakar Rally show
(China Daily) Updated:2006-01-17 10:19

  Despite dropping out of the race in the ninth stage, Men Guangyuan of Team Mitsubishi Ralliart China believed he had improved a lot after participating for the second time in the Dakar Rally.

  Meeting the press after returning to Beijing from Paris, 25-year-old Men, who also had to retire after the eighth stage in last year's race, said: "I'm satisfied with my overall performance in the rally, though a little regretful as for the outcome.

  "But I think I had better control of my vehicle (Mitsubishi Pajero Diesel) and my knowledge of the world's most gruelling race also matured."

  A mechanical failure lost Men a lot of time in the ninth stage from Nouakchott to Kiffa, the stage where Australia's motorcyclist Andy Caldecott died from a bad crash.

  Before that Men was ranked No 47 in the overall standings.

  But Men said he was angry with the failure at the time, but having had time to reflect he now accepts that everyone is prone to mistakes. "He is a good mechanic and I hope he can still help me if I take part in the race next year," the Beijinger said.

  Men was not the only Chinese to drop out of the race. Lu Ningjun of the Team Triangle-Monarch was forced out of the race after his Nissan Pathfinder overturned during the 13th stage.

  But Xu Lang and Zhou Yong, both driving China-made Paladins completed the race with Xu coming in 19th place and Zhou in 43rd.

  "I feel happy for them. After all they are my fellow countrymen," Men said, adding that his next job was to take part in more races to gain experience and hopefully to cooperate with Mitsubishi again for next year's race.




















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