2006 Trial World Championship Round 11

La Rabassa, Andorra 3/9/2006 - Attendance: 3,000

Finished Ahead of Raga, but missed the Victory to Reduce Two Points Only

As 2006 TWC goes into the closing stages, the penultimate round of the season took place in Andorra, the small country locating in between French and Spanish borders.

Thanks to impressive three consecutive victories, Fujinami climbed up to second from fourth in the championship in three rounds. Going to Andorra round he was twelve points behind the championship leader Raga, so all he could do was trying to win and hoping his rival would finish as low as possible. Fuji and the team have agreed prior to the round that they would not think about the championship to concentrate on the battles for the victories at remaining rounds.

The event took place in the mountain at high altitudes. The paddock was set up at the lowest altitudes in the whole event, but it situated at two thousand meters above the sea. The sections were scattered over deep in the forest at higher altitudes using natural big rocks.

There were four water sections at the beginning of the laps. Fuji showed strong ride at those wet and slippery sections to be the only rider marking four cleans on both laps. Cabestany also marked four cleans at the Lap1, so Fuji and Cabestany were two riders making early lead at the lap. Raga meanwhile made an error at the section three, knocking down the marker and putting his handle bar on the ground. He dropped five points, but later he would post an appeal as he wasn't happy with the judgment.

The section five in turn was the biggest challenge for Fuji on both laps. He fived on both occasions to disturbe his rhythm for the rest of the sections. Cabestany was calm and collected in Andorra, and he continued to be strong. He led the field by the half way of the Lap1 and Bou was second to follow him. Just before the end of the Lap1, Fuji was fifth sharing the same points with his teammate following Raga and Fajardo.

Fuji then fought back from the end of the Lap1, and he went back to the second place at the end of the Lap2. He completed the laps having the same penalty points as Raga, but Fuji grabbed the second place by the number of cleans. Raga's protest wasn't granted, so he had to settle for the third place.

Although Fuji couldn't accomplish his goal for the day to take another victory, the way Cabestany rode in Andorra - he had no three point nor five point penalty all day - Fuji had to be happy to finish second and to be in front of his arch-rival.

So as eleven of twelve rounds in the season have completed, Fuji reduced two more points against Raga. The gap still stands ten points with only one round to go. It doesn't look easy at all for Fuji, but he says he has no anxiety about the point gap. He knows it won't be the battle against anybody at the final round in Belgium, but trying to put his best shot.

Quote from Fujigas:

I felt strong and I didn't feel like making any mistake at the water sections. But on both laps, I made a mistake at the section five. I had more mistakes now and then, but I think we had a long course today and it was physically very demanding. I didn't feel perfect today but I am not sure if I could beat Cabestany if my condition was better today. Anyway, I was able to finish ahead of Raga, so I am happy with the way thing went today. I have been spoken with my team staff that the championship is like the lottery ticket for us now. We all know that you have to buy the ticket to win it. I guess I have bought the ticket, so all I can do is to try my best and wait for the announcement. I hope it will be the good one for us.

World Championship 2006
Pos. rider Make L1+L2+TO Pts CL
1. Albert Cabestany Sherco 3+4+1 8 24
2. Takahisa Fujinami Montesa 8+10+0 18 21
3. Adam Raga Gas Gas 10+8+0 18 17
4. Dougie Lampkin Montesa 10+6+3 19 20
5. Jeroni Fajardo Gas Gas 12+12+4 28 17
6. Toni Bou Beta 15+27+1 43 16
7. Marc Freixa Beta 23+32+5 60 10
8. Tadeusz Blazusiak Scorpa 34+33+2 69 5
L1: Lap1 L2: Lap2 TO: Time Over Pts: Penalty Point CL:Clean
Point Standing
1. Adam Raga Gas Gas 181
2. Takahisa Fujinami Montesa 171
3. Albert Cabestany Sherco 160
4. Dougie Lampkin Montesa 159
5. Toni Bou Beta 145
6. Jeroni Fajardo Gas Gas 120

Pix: Pep Segales Official Results PDF
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