2011 FIM SPEA Trial World Championship Round4

Pobladura de las Regueras, Spain - 19/6/2011

Bad day - 4th

photoThe world championship resumed in Spain, the home country of many top trial riders, after about a month of break due to postponement of Japanese Grand Prix. The venue situated in northern Spain close to the Atlantic ocean. Even in the same country, it is very far from Catalonia, where many trial riders reside including Fujinami. The venue held some Spanish championship rounds in the past.

There were Indoor style section at the section1 and the final section, rock sections from the section2 to 4, and wet section starting from the section5. Rocks in the river were very slippery, and hard to see the condition of the surface of the rocks because of its dark color.

Bou was the first starter followed by Cabestany, Raga, and Fujinami started fourth after being fourth on Sunday in France. He rode strong at the beginning of the lap while his rivals dropping a single mark at the early stage - Cabestany at the section3, Raga at the section4, and Bou at the section5, and Fujinami stood top until the section8. The section9 was a tough challenge for everybody, where Bou dropped another point, Cabestany dropped two, and Raga dropped a full mark. Fujinami dropped two points to allow his team mate to be even first.

Fujinami admitted that he was a bit physically and mentally tired by riding at the river sections that required high concentration and tension, and he started to lose the rhythm dropping a single mark at the section10 and 11 in a row. That brought Fujinami down to 2nd next to Bou, but he was not upset as he watched the rivals in front of him making an error, too, such as Cabestany dropped five points at the section10, then Raga dropped five at the following section. At the time, he believed he was in a strong position and expected to keep it till the end. However, Fujinami dropped two points at the following two sections. The gap to Bou became eight, but Fujinami still held the second position with a small cushion against Cabesany who had 11 points, and Raga with 14 points.

photoThen the situation got worse for Fujinami with a mistake at the final section of Lap1. At the man-made section, Fujinami's front tire did not reach the rock in front as he jumped down, and he went down with forward roll motion. He dropped a full mark to finish the lap with 13 points. He gave away the second place to Cabestany.

Fujinami returned to the paddock after Lap1. He went inside the truck to spend some time, where normally he would have his bike maintained to get back to his riding at once, to calm down after a disappointing error at rather easy and cleanable section. He also thought five point ride a lap was reasonable. He was also confident to ride with a single digit marks at his second lap by omitting some easy mistakes.

There was a big log at the section1. The surface was so slippery that the front tire slid away when Fujinami tried to put it onto the log. He fell down to drop five points. He talked with Bou, and the team-mate said he also suffered a full mark by skidding.

It was a heartbreaking mistake at the very first section after settling his feeling down. The mistake at the section thought to be cleanable spoiled his plan, and shook up his concentration, too. He lost the rhythm again and his riding became even worse than the first lap, footing here and there.

photoBefore Fujinami was going into the second half of Lap2, he asked the competition report, which he normally would not do to concentrate on his riding instead. He knew his condition, and he wanted to save energy if he could. The staff told him that his fourth looked to be safe because of a healthy gap over Fajardo, but moving up to third was unlikely. Fujinami changed his plan for the rest of the lap not trying for clean but footing effectively to minimize the penalty points and to save his energy. In the end, Fujinami kept the point gap against Fajardo by eight to finish fourth. He was also eight points away from Cabestany, who finished third.

Without a full mark error at the final section of Lap1, he could have finished the lap with eight points. Riding with eight points for both laps was not unrealistic, and that was his target riding. With 16 points, the Japanese rider could have finished second by six points advantage over the Spaniard. Having Fajardo finished fifth, Fujinami moved up to fourth in the championship. That was at least the good news he could remember in the Spanish round.

Quote from Fujigas:

Bad day. I started OK, but things went worse and worse at Lap2. I was totally out of the rhythm at the end of the lap. I could not keep my concentration till the end today. I dropped five points at the section supposed to be a cleanable, which the mistake I made in France, too. I need to eliminate such errors, otherwise result won't come. I am going to try to improve my result at the next round.

2011 FIM SPEA Trial WorldChampionship
Round4 - Pobladura de las Regueras, Spaine
1 Toni Bou Repsol Montesa Honda 9
2 Adam Raga Gas Gas 19
3 Albert Cabestany Sherco 22
4 Takahisa Fujinami Repsol Montesa Honda 30
5 Jeroni Fajardo Ossa 38
6 James Dabill Beta 61
7 Loris Gubian Gas Gas 63
8 Jack Challoner Beta 65
1 Toni Bou Repsol Montesa Honda 75
2 Adam Raga Gas Gas 65
3 Albert Cabestany Sherco 62
4 Takahisa Fujinami Repsol Montesa Honda 52
5 Jeroni Fajardo Ossa 50
6 James Dabill Beta 37
7 Loris Gubian Gas Gas 33
8 Michael Brown Gas Gas 32