2006 Trial World Championship Round 2
Mortagua, Portugal 9-4-2006 - Attendance: 3,000
Return of the Finest Touch
Fujinami stood at the first position by marking clean at the section
six of the first lap, and he never gave away the position until the
end to take the victory of the round two of 2006 Trial World Championship.
It was a big satisfaction for Fuji after spending a frustrating time
with the injury, and wiping out the bad memories of the last Outdoor
Fuji's left index finger didn't make a full recovery three weeks after
sustaining the injury and only a week from the opening round, where
he had a hard time fighting against the pain to finish sixth. Fuji
had to skip the new bike test scheduled to run after the Spanish round
to return to Barcelona for a treatment for the finger.
He stayed in Barcelona to train other than riding before going to
Portugal on Friday. When he rode the bike first time in five days,
his finger didn't seem to heal as expected. "It was worse than
the previous Sunday." Fuji described the condition before the
competition, but he was surprisingly very confident to be up there
to fight for the victory.
Overall, the severity of the hazards in Mortagua wasn't too high,
where majority was short rock wall covered with mud. Slippery surface
was tricky, but it looked to be a nerve battle as riders had small
chances to make mistakes. Every penalty point could be decisive.
Fuji had an early disadvantage when he made a one point error at the
section two, but he came back strong as he made consecutive cleans
from the section three to fifteen. When Raga made errors at the section
four and five, and Lampkin made a single point error at the section
four and six, Fuji stood on the first position. The winner of the opening
round, Bou didn't have a great luck in Portugal making two points error
at the section four and fiving at the following section, and he lost
the chance for the consecutive victories.
A week ago in Nigran, Fuji was in a big pain and struggled to control
the bike with the injured finger. In Mortagua, however, it was hard
to tell if he had a broken bone by the way he rode. Fuji used four
fingers to operate the clutch most of the time, but he used the index
finger only when he needed a delicate touch of clutch control. One
of the sections Fuji stood out from the rest was the section eight.
It was a long and steep uphill section with running water, and he was
the only rider to mark clean on the first lap and later on the lap
two as well. While Bou added one point, Raga had three, and Lampkin
fived when stuck with a small step, Fuji made a beautiful clean to
establish a healthy lead over the rivals. As the lap one was over,
Fuji had three points lead over Raga and six points advantage against
Cabestany who was third.
Fuji rode well on the lap one, but he knew more than anybody that
the second half would be a big challenge for him. It was so a week
ago that he began to have a real problem with the finger. Also on the
second lap, the rain started to pour harder than the first lap making
the condition more difficult.
Lampkin who finished fifth on the lap one with twelve points came
back strong on the lap two, showing a flawless ride until the section
eight. At the section eight, he almost marking clean too, but footing
at the end of the section to add one point penalty. Normally very calm
rider from Britain shouted aloud to show his frustration. Fuji too
shouted to express his feeling at the section, but it was from his
satisfaction as he marked clean.
Fuji is known for a delicate clutch work. The more he beginning to
be able to use the finger the stronger he became in the game, and he
marked number of cleans in Mortagua. Fuji added two points at the section
nine, but Raga also added one point at the section twelve, resulting
the gap between two remained the same. Cabestany meanwhile had a very
difficult time on the second lap. He had four fives plus two more penalty
points, losing the touch of the top two riders. Fuji finished the second
lap one point more than Raga, but finished two points better in the
overall points to take the victory number one for the 2006 season.
It was a good contrast from the previous round where it was almost
a miracle for Fuji to compete, and a week later, he rode strong and
took the victory convincingly. Still, it wasn't pain free for Fuji
in Mortugal, and he had pain killer treatments now and then to get
himself going. Fuji expects there won't be any disadvantage as far
as the injury by the time of the US round, which will be held at the
end of May. Although he had a bad start of the season, as two rounds
are up, he is only four points behind Raga who leads the championship.
Fuji believes he is different from what he was in 2005, and could be
even stronger than the year 2004 in which he clinched the championship.
It is going to be the beginning of the convincing season for Fuji starting
at Portugal round? We just have to wait and see.
Quote from Fujigas:
|World Championship 2006
|| Albert Cabestany
|| Gas Gas
|L1: Lap1 L2: Lap2 TO:
Time Over Pts: Penalty Point CL:Clean
|| Gas Gas
|| Jeroni Fajardo
RESULTS TOP | PAGE TOP
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