TrialGP Japan 18
TrialGP 2018 Round TGP 2 , 1
Takahisa Fujinami up close and personal with the home crowd for the first podium of the year
Japanese Repsol Honda Team rider Takahisa Fujinami finished on the podium on the first day of the TrialGP competition in Japan. ‘Fujigas’ overtook team-mate Toni Bou who posted fourth.
Takahisa Fujinami took his Japanese podium tally in top flight competition to twenty-seven – the 161st rostrum place in his lengthy career. Today the rider found the right rhythm and forgot about the right shoulder injury. Fujigas rode at leisure to achieve a fine third-place result. Undoubtedly, the great support from the home crowd, at every section along the route, was a decisive factor in the season’s first podium. In the general standings Fujinami climbs to fifth place.
Meanwhile, current champion Toni Bou wasn’t experiencing his most inspired day, feeling ill at ease on the bike and finding that the overly-simple sections of the course played to his disadvantage. Moreover, mistakes were paid dearly with little subsequent chance of making up on dropped points. Bou lies in second overall, two points behind the leader.
Tomorrow, Sunday, sees day two of the Japanese trail, to be battled over the same route as today, where Bou will be hoping to return to form and get back onto the podium.
Toni Bou 1
Today I just didn’t find the good sensations at any time. During the trial I tried to overcome some of the errors committed, but I wasn’t comfortable. We hope that for day two we will be able to get back on the right track, because today I didn’t feel good on the bike and I lacked the confidence to ride better.
Takahisa Fujinami 5
I’m very happy with today’s podium. I’m still recovering from the injury and I did not expect to finish on the podium, but already on the first lap I felt very comfortable and only got eight points. On the second I made a few more mistakes, but with the advantage from the first lap, I was able to finish third. I’m very happy also for being able to get on the podium at the home of Honda.
Trials are trials. Today Toni did everything he could. Now we just have to work as tomorrow is another day and we can remedy the mistakes of today. Fujinami was spectacular as always here in Japan where he always comes away with flying colours. As I said, this year will not be easy; the rivals are pushing hard, so we’ll have to work hard too.