Toni Bou and Takahisa Fujinami ? both Repsol Montesa HRC packed the podium at the Grand Prix of Italy as they placed first and third respectively at an event that marked the fifth round of the 2011 SPEA FIM Trial World Championship. As has been the case for most of the season, Bou on his factory Cota 4RT was once again in a class of his own as he came home well clear of eventual runner-up Adam Raga ? Gas Gas. Fujinami was delighted with his rostrum finish after he spent most of the day being sick in the hot and humid conditions that were present until it rained heavily as the trial was coming to a close.
Sitting just over one hundred kilometres north west of the city of Milan, the town of Montecrestese has a population of just one thousand two hundred people who live in the shadow of the surrounding mountains. This small and unassuming venue has never played host to a Trial GP previously, and offered a course that stretched twelve kilometres around the lower parts of the local area. Large rounded boulders and steep rocky outcrops were very much the theme of the competition, and although heavy rain in the days prior to the competition made the sections very severe, finally two days of warm and dry weather over the weekend made for a relatively easy trial.
In reality Bou?s fifth victory from six counting days aboard his factory four-stroke thus far was never in doubt, as he began to open up an advantage over his rivals as early as mid way through the first lap. His loss of only three marks, one in section six, clean in the seventh hazard and two in section eight, as he made light work of three of the most difficult tests was to put him clear at the head of the field after a tense and tight start to the day. Toni only parted with one further dab to end his first tour on a mere four marks, which was six better than Albert Cabestany ? Sherco who held second spot at this point.
Down in equal fifth position at the end of lap one a very sick Fujinami was about to benefit from a change in the weather, as the cooler temperature that would eventually bring rain, allowed him to operate more normally during the second half of the trial. Takahisa?s closing lap of just five marks was enough to put the popular Japanese rider on the podium, which was a much-deserved reward for his determination on what had been a tough day for the thirty-one year old.
The second and final lap was conducted at some pace as the riders raced to finish the trial before the rain arrived, as this would make things out on the course much more difficult. Raga and Bou led the charge, and despite their speed over the ground they both produced improved lap scores, those being one and two marks respectively. This would give Bou the win and lift Raga into second place, both riders finishing well ahead of Fujinami in terms of total marks, as he collected third spot.
Bou now heads the general standings by a healthy eighteen points from Raga with three rounds remaining, whilst Fujinami has now moved within two points of third place as Cabestany finished in fifth spot today.
HONDA RIDER COMMENTS:
Toni Bou (Repsol Montesa)
Trial result: 1st Championship position: 1st
?I made another good trial today and I am happy with the way I am riding at the moment. In the end the sections proved to be a little easy, as the organisers made changes just in case the rain came earlier than it did. My first lap was very strong and then we made a good strategy to go fast on the second lap, so that we could finish all the sections before the rain came. This was important for both me and Adam (Raga), and meant we could keep our scores low. Now I will make a small holiday before the Grand Prix in Scotland.?
Takahisa Fujinami (Repsol Montesa)
Trial result: 3rd Championship position: 4th
?I was not feeling well all week, but yesterday when I made training I felt a bit better. Then this morning when I woke up I began to be sick almost immediately, I was sick many times both before and during the race. The hot weather made me feel even worse, so I was lucky when it became cooler on the second lap. I made a much better second lap and to finish on the podium today feels better than a victory on another day, as I thought this result was impossible as I felt so terrible.?
Laia Sanz (Repsol Montesa)
Trial result: 18th Championship position: 16th
?I am angry with myself today, as the sections were not so difficult so I had the chance to make a good race and to take a good result. But in the end I made so many really stupid mistakes in the easy places and this has given me a really bad result. I am not happy with myself at all. ?
POS / RIDER / NAT / MOTORCYCLE / MARKS LOST
1/ Toni BOU / SPA / MONTESA / 6
2/ Adam RAGA / SPA / GAS GAS / 14
3/ Takahisa FUJINAMI / JPN / MONTESA / 26
4/ Jeroni FAJARDO / SPA / OSSA / 27 (19×0, 7×1, 0×2, 0×3, 4×5, Time: 4:05:16)
5 / Albert CABESTANY / SPA / SHERCO / 27 (19×0, 7×1, 0×2, 0×3, 4×5, Time: 4:10:30)
6/ James DABILL / GBR / BETA / 41
7/ Loris GUBIAN / FRA / GAS GAS / 59
8/ Matteo GRATTAROLA / ITA / GAS GAS / 77
9/ Jack CHALLONER / GBR / BETA / 82
10/ Michael BROWN / GBR / GAS GAS / 95
11/ Daniele MAURINO / ITA / BETA / 100
12/ Fabio LENZI / ITA / MONTESA / 102
13/ Francesco IOLITTA / ITA / BETA / 108
14/ Michele ORIZIO / ITA / GAS GAS / 117
15/ Alexz WIGG / GBR / SHERCO / 122
16/ Akira Shibata / JPN / MONTESA / 137
CHAMPIONSHIP POSITIONS TO DATE:
1 BOU 115, 2 RAGA 97, 3 CABESTANY 86, 4 FUJINAMI 84, 5 FAJARDO 73, 6 DABILL 58,
7 GUBIAN 50, 8 CHALLONER 45, 9 BROWN 43, 10 GRATTAROLA 42, 11 WIGG 24,
12 IOLITTA 22, 13 LAMPKIN 7, 14 MAURINO 5, 15 LENZI 4, 16 STRANGHONER 4,
17 ORIZIO 2
NEXT EVENT: ROUND 06 SUNDAY JULY 31 FORT WILLIAM, GREAT BRITAIN
Source: Honda Pro Image
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