2006 Trial World Championship Round 12

Spa Francorchamps, Belgium 24/9/2006 - Attendance: 5,000

Fourth for Fujinami, Second for the Season

The final round of the season, Belgian GP took place at the famous international racing course, Spa Francorchamps. The course is surrounded by the deep forests, providing the ideal fields for the trials competition. Although they arranged stones to set up some of the sections, there were still many sections with natural landscape. Overall, Fujinami liked the sections in the round.

Fujinami had a clear goal for the final round, which was to concentrate on his riding and not worrying about the points and the rival. That was the attitude he's been having toward the competition lately. And it was a big driver for his good performance and a huge recovery in the championship especially since the French round. He would try the best, and the results should come.

Fuji showed decent rides at the beginning of the Lap1, marking five consecutive cleans with two points failure at the section six. He was lying second following Cabestany by one point, and one point ahead of his archrival and the championship leader Raga. At Belgium, Raga was the first rider to start, and it seemed that he was rushing his way; almost he was trying to stay away from Fuji. Eventually, it helped Raga to capture the victory by his competing time when he finished in a tie with Cabestany at the end of the day.

At the section eight, Fuji stuck his front wheel when trying to climb triple or quadruple step, suffering his first five of the day. Fuji dropped to third as Cabestany rode the section with one point and Raga with two points penalty.

Alhough Fuji knew what he had to do in Belgium, he was a bit nervous about the progress of the event. It was a tough call for him to challenge for the title, and it must have affected him psychologically. It wasn't the first time for Fuji to become nervous at the final round of the season; this is the subject he has to work on for the coming seasons too.

After his first five, at the section nine, Fuji could not clear the rock at the end of the hill climb to suffer another five. He was still third, but the point gap against top two became bigger. As the Lap1 was over, Raga was first with six points and Cabestany followed with eight points. Fuji made some small mistakes here and there to let the top two riders get away.

At the Lap2 however, Fuji bounced back. At the section eight where he fived previously, he rode with a single point, where meanwhile, both Raga and Cabestany fived. Fuji went on to drop one mark at the section nine. Raga fived again, so Fuji recovered eight points at those two sections alone.

Just about Fuji got back onto the rhythm, a major mishap struck him at the section ten. He was a little bit off the balance when he reached the rock at the top of the hill, and he went over the hill and crashed to the bottom. Luckily he stayed away from any major injury except twisting his wrist a little. He recalls that he could play safe by footing when he was off the balance, but he knew he had to take a risk in order to reduce the point gap.

At the following section in turn, he thought he was too vigor during the climb, and he slowed down a little. But he ended up not being able to climb all the way, dropping another five points.

As the two laps of the competition was over, Fuji was fifth following Bou. He missed the podium first time since Japanese Grand Prix in June.

The 2006 season was full of injuries and problems for Fuji. He was in a condition far from competition for at least five rounds. Still apart from those rounds, he was either winning or at the second place. So, it was a while for him to be fully defeated. The final and important round for Fuji turned out to be a frustrating one as he could not repeat the performance he has shown since the French round.

So, the season is over, and Fuji stepped onto the box for second in the championship. He had an expression far from his satisfaction, but it was understandable after the way he fought that day.

Montesa meanwhile captured the constructor's championship thanks to both Lampkin and Fuji's effort. For Fuji, it was seventh runner-up place in his career. He was told that it was the new record taking runner-up position for seven times in the history book.

Quote from Fujigas:

I rode well at the beginning but when I found that Raga was riding so well, I started to worry about the rival. Mr.Cirera told me to forget about the championship to concentrate on own riding. I tried, but I couldn't reset my mind today. Knowing the man who I had to beat showing a good performance and going better and better, it was hard for me to keep my mind calm. My boss didn't like the way I fought at all, so I had a hard lecture from him after the event. I know I am not getting the title next year either if I continue to do such riding. I like to say this is the last time to have such depressing ride like I had today. I am tired of getting second position in the championship. Surely, I am not planning to extend the runner-up record next year.

World Championship 2006
Pos. rider Make L1+L2+TO Pts CL
1. Adam Raga Gas Gas 6+22+0 28 19
2. Albert Cabestany Sherco 8+20+0 28 19
3. Toni Bou Beta 25+15+0 40 15
4. Takahisa Fujinami Montesa 18+23+0 41 14
5. Jeroni Fajardo Gas Gas 21+23+0 44 15
6. Dougie Lampkin Montesa 22+24+0 46 14
7. Marc Freixa Beta 31+33+0 64 8
8. James Dabill Beta 37+39+0 76 6
L1: Lap1 L2: Lap2 TO: Time Over Pts: Penalty Point CL:Clean
Point Standing
1. Adam Raga Gas Gas 201
2. Takahisa Fujinami Montesa 184
3. Albert Cabestany Sherco 177
4. Dougie Lampkin Montesa 169
5. Toni Bou Beta 160
6. Jeroni Fajardo Gas Gas 131

Pix: Hiroshi Nishimaki Official Results PDF
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