Gouveia is a lucky charm for Toni Bou. At the same location last year the champ celebrated his 100th victory in TrialGP world championships. Today he was once again on the top of the podium, this time taking the tally to 110 top-flight wins. Takahisa Fujinami, meanwhile, had to settle for fifth place, just one point shy of fourth spot after a decent trial.
The fifth round of the TrialGP world championship, held today in Gouveia, Portugal was marked by roasting temperatures and very demanding sections located amongst the boulders of the Parque de Nostra Senhora los Verdes.
Repsol Honda Team ace Toni Bou suffered considerably in the gruelling Portuguese trial. In spite of a first lap which saw Bou make several mistakes and pick-up a penalty for exceeding the lap time limit, the champion was nevertheless able to stage a comeback on lap two to take his win tally to 110 out of 210 world championship participations. This, the fifth victory of the season increases Bou’s overall lead to 22 points over the nearest second-place rival.
Bou’s Repsol Honda Team partner Takahisa Fujinami, also had a rough battle in the Portuguese sections. After leading for much of the first lap the Japanese rider finished the first tour still in a potential podium position, however, the second time around saw several riders so narrowly divided on points that Fujinami had to eventually settle for fifth final spot, a mere point from fourth place.
The next TrialGP world championship outing, the sixth points-paying round, will be held next weekend in Auron, France, 20/ 21 July.
Toni Bou 1
TRIAL: 1ST STANDINGS: 1ST
Today was a very tough trial. It was a very positive weekend, with the type of terrain that we like a lot. We rode a very good second round through the sections, so we leave here with a very good taste in our mouths. We will try to be fully recovered for France to be able to have a good trial. We know that, if we win, I will be champion, something really impressive, but the important thing is to have a great trial. I am very happy and I want to thank the whole team because this week they have done a great job.
Takahisa Fujinami 6
TRIAL: 5TH STANDINGS: 4TH
Today we started very well. Until section 13 I was leader, but later I picked up some time penalty marks. On the second lap I tried to change the line and the tracks. In the end I finished fifth but with good sensations. We will try to improve on the things that didn’t work for us today before next week’s trial.
This was a weekend for the whole team. Obviously Toni battled hard and suffered because these trials are not easy and the rivals are very strong. Fujinami has also fought until the final sections to try and make the podium. Finally, it was not to be, but it was a great result. We will be fighting trial by trial, as we have been doing all season, so in France we will continue to do the same: try to win. Thanks as always to all the team and the riders for the good work.