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Sebastopol native Lena Haug endured a dog attack, got kicked in the face and lost her gear, yet lived to tell the tale of the Mongol Derby
THE PRESS DEMOCRAT
November 18, 2022, 2:06PM
Lena Haug was close to finishing the longest and most punishing horse race in the world — 640 miles across the Mongolian steppe on half-wild horses, roughly tracing the route of 12th-century emperor Genghis Khan. Fellow competitors already had fallen out, one with a broken back, another a broken neck.
It was the final night of the race for the 31-year-old equestrian, who grew up in Sebastopol and attended Summerfield Waldorf School. She was just 4 miles from the finish line. But riders must stop for the night at 7 p.m. Haug stopped 10 minutes late, which meant another 20-minute penalty when she took off for the finish line the next morning. What weighed heavily on her mind that night was not the triumph of finishing the race, but her desperate desire to change her shirt...
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