Trial Championship Round 4 Duluth, U.S.A.
forth round of world trial championship was held at Duluth in Minnesota
U.S.A., the city by the Lake Superior. The venue held the world trial
round 2 years ago. After winning the Japanese Grand Prix Fujinami flew
back to his base in Spain prior to his US trip. Achieving his first
perfect victory at round 3, it would be a test round for him to prove
it was real and repeat his performance he had shown at his home round.
Day 1 - Saturday, June 5th
Due to the tight schedule in the season,
the team decided to use two motorcycles alternatively, and sent the
secondary bike to the US. It was the bike Fuji rode in indoor championship.
Although the team had extensive modification to adjust the bike as
close as Fuji's main bike in outdoor, it was undeniable that Fuji felt
a slight uneasiness on the bike, which he had not ridden for quite
Fuji was at the pinnacle of his condition
in the US. Fuji's trainer Mr. Kamata was there as the previous round,
was perfect too. Although he had a little cold as he arrived in the
US, it wasn't too much to worry about after all.
Most of the sections
were way too easy when the competitors observed them on Friday. The
organizer responded the petition presented by the
competitors and modified the sections to make them more difficult.
were 14 A-class riders entered the event. They weredivided by 6 for
ballot, and Lampkin and Fuji were left to decide the final
position. Fuji drew the second from the last.
It was a torrential
rain on Saturday, making the condition extraordinary with the sections
which had been modified to be more difficult.
Rain kept falling and muddy areas became uncontrollably slippery,
was no choice to put their feet down to move forward with 3 points
in some areas. However not all the sections became more difficult,
for the rain washed the dirt away to provide better grip in some
Fuji made a lot
of mistake on lap1. Apart from the section 9 where no one was
able to attack with flooding, he
failed to score
from section 5 to 12. He knew he was off, and he felt his hope
for the victory
was fading away. But when lap1 was over he found that other riders
were not doing well either. Lampkin finished the lap on top with
24 points followed by Jarvis 26, and Fuji was third with 27 points,
3 points gap. It wasn't very bad position to recover at lap2.
lap2, Fuji tried to concentrate not worry about how other would do
and tried to focus on his riding. Lampkin made a major
at section 3 and broke his bike. It was a huge step about 4
he smashed his front end into the rock, breaking a front fork
bracket. Fuji was there and watched his major rival's misfortune,
it did not make Fuji feel any better, knowing the hard time
stronger. Fuji knew how strong Lampkin was, and he was sure
Lampkin would come back up.
As lap2 was over, Raga finished on top
with 17 points. Fuji was second with 1 point behind and won the day
by 4 points.
lost his rhythm after the crash, and he continued to add
penalties. It was
third consecutive victory for Fuji. But he too was off the
pace, and it wasn't truly a satisfactory result for him.
It was one
'lucky wins', which Fuji had not experienced before.
Day 2 - Sunday, June 6th
It rained throughout Saturday but it stopped
about the time for the prize ceremony of day1. On Sunday, the sun showed
up and the weather turned to be very beautiful. As the weather drastically
changed, some of the sections became easy, but overnight alteration
took place at some sections, it was hard to say if it became easier
or more difficult than the previous day. Fuji found it was more slippery
on lap1 compared to day 1.
Lap1 didn't start out well for Fuji and
he fived at section 2. Lampkin too fived at section 3, it was a seesaw
game between Fuji, Lampkin
and Raga. Lapmkin showed decent performance and kept his lead, but
at section 13, another misfortune struck him. He missed the marker,
which was altered from Saturday and fived at the section appeared
be very easy. A huge set back for the main rival, still Fuji knew
it was going to be very tough battle. It was a battle against 7 times
champion Lampkin and 2 times indoor champion Raga, both are very
Although Fuji finished lap1 on top and built
2 points lead over Raga, he finished the lap before he was able to
pick up his rhythm.
didn't feel he was at his best.
For lap2, Fuji decided to keep an eye on two of his main competitors.
One thing Fuji was lucky for the lap was that he could observe
how they attacked the sections without risking his time because
Fuji was first to add 1 point at section
2, followed by Lampkin and Raga at section 3. At section 5 all three
1 point, and
and Raga added another point at section 7. It was close and severe
and the persistency became the key for the victory.
After a severe
mental battle, Lampkin managed to keep the score lowest with 2 points,
and he finished at top for the lap, Fuji
followed him with 3 points. Fourth rider Bou meanwhile finished
the lap with
15 penalty points, showing the level of competition the top
three riders performed.
So the day 2 was over and Fuji won it with
15 points against Lampkin and Raga who both had 17 points. Raga had
to settle for
the podium with number of cleans.
It was Fuji's second time
to achieve the perfect victory. He became a regular winner, and he
got used to having a perfect
However Fuji wasn't too much thrilled about his results,
for there still
a big goal to conquer.
Quote from Fujigas:
I feel lucky that I won two consecutive days. Having Lampkin finished
4th on Saturday helped me too. I was surprised to know that I
won on Saturday. I didn't expect it at all. Yet I am happy about
Sunday's result because it turned out the way I planned. I was
fighting for win, I managed to build some lead on lap1 and kept
it on lap2. Many people congratulate me on the 4 consecutive
victories, but I don't think it is the time to celebrate. We
still have a long way to go, and I want to be happy at the end
of the season, not now.
World Trial Championship
Round 4 Duluth, U.S.A.
|| Takahisa Fujinami
||45 (27+18) 11
||49 (26+23) 8
||52 (31+17+4) 12
||53 (24+29) 13
||69 (39+30) 6
||77 (45+32) 8
||15 (12+3) 21
||17 (15+2) 23
||17 (14+3) 21
||33 (16+17) 18
||35 (20+15) 14
||44 (27+17) 16
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