Laia Sanz Pla-Giribert is a Spanish female motorbike racer most known for her numerous wins and championship titles in the international enduro and trial competitions. Among other achievements, she won thirteen world championship titles in trials and five world championship titles in enduro races.
Laia made a debut in a motorcycle category at Dakar Rally in 2011, regularly competing since then in the world's toughest off-road race as the best female racer and scoring the ninth place overall as her best result.
She also occasionally participated in car races, especially at Barcelona 24 Hours race, where she scored several class victories. Most recently, she won TCR class at 24 Hours of Barcelona in 2018, driving Monlau Competicion's Cupra TCR.
Starting the racing career at the age of seven
Born in December 1985 in Catalunya, Laia Sanz started to race motorcycles even before she went to school. She entered the first competitition at the age of seven. It was the Catalan Junior Championship. She won her first race against male racers in 1997, also taking part in the first international trial competition that year.
In 1998, Laia participated in the first edition of the Women's Trial European Championship, unofficial at the time, and she won. That brought her an attention of fans and teams and she became the professional racer in 2000, at the age of only fourteen.
Collecting championship titles since 2000
In 2000, Laia had a victorious start of her professional career, taking the Women's Trial World Championship, finishing second in the Women's Trial European Championship and helping the Spanish team to win the Women's Trial Des Nations.
It was a just a beginning of the fantastic career in which she won championship titles in every trial competition she entered, including thirteen World titles, ten European titles, eight Spanish titles and six wins at Trial des Nations.
It's not easy to count all Laia's championship titles
Starting an enduro career in 2010, conquering the world five times
In 2010, parallel to his commitments in trials, Laia started his enduro career. She finished third in his debut at the Women's Enduro World Championship. A year later, she made a step up and finished second in the championship.
Finally, she became the champion for the first time in 2012. After that, she conquered the world four more times in a row from 2013 to 2016.
Laia Sanz is the best female rider at Dakar Rally
Dakar Rally debut in 2011, ninth place overall in 2015
In 2011, Laia's dream came true when she made a debut at Dakar Rally in the motorcycle category, driving a Honda CRF450X. She managed to finish the race in 39th place overall and the best among female riders. Next year, she reached the finish again despite an accident in which she was injured.
The highlight of her Dakar career came in January 2015 when she finished ninth overall in the motorcycle category, still driving a Honda. In 2016, Laia switched to KTM at Dakar Rally, finishing in 15th place. He repeated two more participations with KTM in 2017 and 2019. In 2019, she is coming to Dakar Rally as a member of KTM Factory Racing Team.
Laia Sanz next to her KTM
Victorious attempts on the four wheels
During his rich motorycle career, Laia tried himself also on the four wheels, participating occasionally in some one-make competitions (Seat Leon Eurocup) or endurance races. She gained some success at 24 Hours of Barcelona, scoring several class victories.
In 2011, she was first in A2 class, driving a Renault Clio III RS for Codony Sport. One more victory at Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya came in 2018 when she finished first in TCR class with Monlau Competicion's Cupra TCR. She also works as Cupra brand ambasador.