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This is the single-news section of the news "Offroad & Motorsports". To see all news please use the link under the article or navigate with the left main-navigation.

Dakar 2007: Marc Coma admitted to Hospital after his Crash.

The Repsol KTM team rider arrived at 16.30 p.m. local time at the Dakar airport from Tambacunda, after a 1.5-hour flight together with other riders that were injured today. After his arrival, Coma was taken by ambulance to the Dakar Hospital, where he was admitted at 17.45 local time. Right now he is being examined - cervical CAT and brain scan- to discount any possible injury after the accident. Coma, who is conscious and has been talking about what happened with Jordi Arcarons during the flight, will be 24 hours under observation, and if everything is normal, he will be dismissed from hospital to return back home tomorrow.

After starting from the bivouac in Kayes (Mail) this morning, leading the overall standings with an advantage of 52 minutes over the second classified rider, Marc Coma suffered a crash after kilometre 35 of the special, forcing him to retire from the race. After the start of the special at 08.20, Coma arrived at kilometre 35, a badly indicated point in the road book, which Jordi Arcarons and himself had already detected yesterday evening while checking the details of the route, and had told the organisation.

During the special, the Repsol KTM rider branched off the route in that point and went some 6 km along a rugged terrain, filled with holes, crashing some kilometres later and loosing consciousness. One of the helicopters of the organization went to the site of the accident after detecting through the Iiritrack system that Coma had stopped. The Spanish rider was evacuated to the Tambacunda bivouac, where Dr. Florence Pommerie, responsible of the ASO medical centre, made the first diagnosis.

Doctor Florence Pommerie, responsible of the ASO medical centre: "It seems that Marc hit his head in the crash, but the examination of the helmet has shown no external damage. In fact, the accident occurred at low speed and therefore we think that the hit must not have been too heavy. The neurological analysis has shown a completely normal state, as well as his consciousness. However, since he lost consciousness for some instants right after the crash and seemed very tired and drowsy, he will get a brain scan.

He is physically alright and the examination has been satisfactorily: blood pressure, blood tests, respiration are OK and he doesn’t feel sick. He has had cervical x-rays because he felt some pain in that area and there was no injury there either. Now he is having x-rays in the hip but we do not think that we are going to find any fracture. The loss of consciousness could have been the result of the hit inside the helmet. However we will wait and see the scanner results to be able to give a sure diagnosis and he will be kept under observation for 24 hours to be absolutely sure."

Marc Coma: "I got lost around km forty of the special. I was riding off-road and I think that I hit a tree or something. I don’t really know whether I lost consciousness or not, I don’t remember. It wasn't too heavy but I felt dizzy. I know that I got up again and that I just wasn't able to stay on the bike. I fell, got up again; I was riding very slowly and I just could stand alone. Then the helicopter came, I didn't really know where I was and they brought me here. I seem to be alright. There’s a tiny little thing in one vertebra on the x-rays but I hope it’s nothing serious. It’s a real shame, but I want to say thank you to the team, for their work on all of these day, and to say sorry to the fans and the people who trusted in me. I feel as if I had let them down. But we'll get up again, come back and try to win again. Thank you."

2007/01/19 | 20:42 CET | Editor: MR/hs

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