Trials > Round 06: France > Race Results
WCTFranceJune 26, 2005
2005 World Outdoor Trials Championship Round 6 France

Fujinami and Lampkin Endure Tough French Grand Prix

Repsol Montesa HRC team mates Takahisa Fujinami and Dougie Lampkin endured a very difficult weekend at the French Grand Prix held in Ales. The reigning outdoor champion Fujinami recorded a 5 8 result after he suffered in the extreme heat on both days and now lies third in the championship. Lampkin had his own problems and was lucky to finish at all on Saturday following a massive crash early on the second lap. However not even a trip in an ambulance could stop the British recording twelfth on day one and bouncing back to take sixth on day two despite it being highly unlikely that he would start at all due to the extent of his injury. Marc Freixa the third member of the Repsol Montesa HRC team was the best performer with a sixth and fifth place during Saturdays and Sundays trials.

Marc Freixa (E-Montesa)

Doug Lampkin (GB-Montesa)

Adam Raga (Gas Gas) took convincing back to back victories to take control of the championship ahead of Albert Cabestany (Sherco) who went 3 - 2 over the weekend to keep his title challenge alive. Returning from injury Jeroni Fajardo (Gas Gas) enjoyed a great come back with a runners up spot and a third place over the two days of competition respectively. After leaving Andorra last weekend the championship quickly shifted countries to France for the next Grand Prix on the 2005 tour. Situated approximately fifty kilometers North of the southern city of Nimes, the Poles Mecanique motorsport complex sits just out side the town of Ales. With two tarmac race circuits and a purpose built rally stage, this facility welcomed World championship trials for the first time. The fifteen sections were located on the perimeter of the permanent courses, the majority being of a man made type with only a few more natural hazards being found on the steep wooded hillside close by.

With the exception of Antonio Bou (Beta) and Cabestany, who both dropped a single mark, plus Fajardo who fived here, the top group of riders all remained feet up in the relatively easy opening section which was no more than a steep climb on a loose rock face immediately adjacent to the paddock. This was much the case in section two, where the fearsome initial three meter rock slab actually rode much easier than it first appeared, although Cabestany and Freixa both added one to their scores here.

Sections three and four were where the real action began with two highly spectacular hazards set in a gulley that gave excellent viewing opportunities for the crowd that had now assembled. The first of these sections had three large steps, one at the start, one in the middle and a double step right at the exit. Cabestany, Lampkin, Fajardo and Bou all failed within a meter of the end cards as they were unable to find their timing to crest the final face. Raga signalled that he was a man on form with a great clean, which Fujinami duly matched with equal style a few moments later.

On the opposite site of the circuit the fifth and sixth hazards could be found, and these were perhaps the easiest of the day, although Cabestany did not think so when he fived section six on the first lap, as he begun a run of three consecutive maximums, which would ultimately spoil his day. Shifting into the wood the riders were faced with the three most natural sections of the trial. The length and severity of section seven meant even the top runners went for an automatic three, knowing that attempting to clean this twisty and dusty hazard could see then run over the one and half minute time limit. Fajardo did actually clean this hazard on his second attempt, with Bou coming close to matching him with just one dab, the remainder of the scores here were simply threes or fives.

The five meter vertical rock face at the end of section eight can only be described as dangerous, with each rider needing at least four minders to be put in place to catch their bike before any attempt could even be considered. The hale bales below and the large catch net to protect riders from falling over the edge were of little consolation. Raga and Kuroyama were best here on the first lap, both just needing a hefty prod to push themselves clear as they reached the summit. Raga went one better on his second lap to record the only clean of the day.

The run through sections ten to fourteen was pretty much as normal, with the riders rushing to beat the first lap time limit having spent the majority of their three and half hour allowance in the first half of the course. The arena type section immediately in front of the control tower proved a fitting finale with the final step being right on the limit of being possible or not. The four strokes were certainly not at their best here, with the two stroke machines seeming to produce more instant power to get the lift required.

Raga rounded out his lap with a typically flamboyant clean to take the lead at the halfway point on a score of thirteen marks, six ahead of Fujinami and twelve in front of Fajardo. With scores of thirty and thirty six marks respectively Freixa and Lampkin found themselves well down the leader board and with much to do on their closing lap.

Lampkins fight back was short lived as he crashed from the highest point in section three, the resulting impact left him with a damaged hip and looking like that he would be unable to continue. Lampkin was treated immediately by medics who put on a stretcher before taking him in an ambulance to the on site medical center. Here the event Doctor examined the British rider, but was unable to conclude the full extent of his injury, and therefore suggested that Lampkin should be taken to hospital for a more detailed diagnosis.

Lampkin may have been down, but he was not out just yet as he insisted on getting back on his bike to ride the remainder of the lap to collect fives in every section without making a real attempt so that he could at least record a finish, hoping to recover some valuable championship points. He managed to achieve this amazing feat before finally being taken to hospital by the waiting ambulance at the finish. Lampkin netted twelfth place and four points for his brave efforts.

Away from Lampkins incident, Fajardo was the other rider creating the news as he put together the best lap score of the trial to hoist himself into the runners up position come the close of play. Having witnessed Lampkins crash, Raga was visibly shaken by the whole ordeal and himself took five in the same section before putting together a shaky lap that was nearly double his morning score, but still enough to take the well deserve victory. Cabestany would eventually demote Bou for the final podium place by virtue of a tie decider and after protest and counter protest.

The extreme heat had taken its toll on Fujinami during the final stages of the day, his assault fell apart from section nine onwards leaving him down in fifth as literally he almost limped home due to severe cramp in both of his legs. Freixas day was a contrasting story, making a good recovery after a poor first lap to take sixth at the end of the trial.

Raga 1st :
"It has been a good day for both me and also the Gas Gas team, with Fajardo and me achieving a 1- 2 for the first time ever. I made a really good first lap and was the only rider to get to this point without taking a five. The second lap was a different story as I had my concentration and rhythm broken by Lampkins crash. It was not nice to see, and it is clear that it could have happened to any of us. I know he is a rival, but I dont want to lose him from the championship race in this way. After that I just did enough to win, and now I am leading the championship again so I can be happy with that too."

Fajardo 2nd :
"I am very, very happy today, as it has been a long time to come back since I broke my leg at the opening Spanish championship round back in April. Before that moment I felt that I was riding well, so it was a massive disappointment when I got injured. It has taken nearly two months to get back to the same riding level and to get the leg nearly 100%, but from today I think I can now look forward again, and I hope I can make a similar result tomorrow and in some of the remaining rounds."

Cabestany 3rd :
"After such a poor first lap, I am very lucky to be on the podium and in third place. I made many, many mistakes to begin with and it was hard to be confident after that and to try and recover my position. I dont think that the sections have been good, some are dangerous and some are stupid where we are riding over and outside the cards. This is not correct. I know that it is important not to lose touch with my rivals at this point in the season so I must continue to work very hard."

Fujinami 5th :
"My riding on the first lap was OK, as apart from section eight and section fifteen I was able to match Raga. The final section was certainly very difficult on the four stroke. I also begun the second lap quite well, but when I made a five in section nine I knew I was nearly finished physically. The hot weather was very difficult for me and by legs were tired and had bad cramp for the last five sections, this is the reason my score was so high. I really hope I can do better on Sunday."

Lampkin 12th :
"It was a big crash, the worst problem was that I could not get off the bike. As soon as I landed I had instant pain in my hip. I really thought it might have been broken or dislocated as the pain was incredible. Whilst I knew it was bad, all I wanted to do was to finish, maybe the points I have scored today might be of some use at the end of the year. I am not sure at this moment if I will be able to ride tomorrow, but I will be doing everything possible to try and start at least."

Laia Sanz -
"Repsol Montesa HRC really struggled today and could only manage a lowly twelfth position. There were too many big steps, they were simply to big for me and to make it worse my result was even lower as I also made mistakes in the easy sections. It has been a terrible day for me."

Overnight there had been little change in the weather, with Sunday being even hotter than the day before, and out on the course only a few modifications had been made to slightly reduce the overall severity of the trial. Raga begun the day as he had done yesterday with the loss of only a single mark after six sections. But despite this performance he was not the early leader, as Cabestany was still un-penalised through the same number of hazards, the Sherco rider not losing his first mark until the eighth hazard. These two riders were not alone, as Bou was also equal with Raga after the first third of the lap.

Raga momentarily lost his grip on victory when he failed in section seven on the first lap, however he would only add one more mark to his total as he closed his lap in a manner and style that was simply unmatched. In contrast Cabestany signed off on his initial tour with two consecutive fives in sections ten and eleven. Fujinami rode himself back into contention with a similar run in to Raga, after the Japanese rider had suffered a poor start including fives at section four and section nine.

The first lap scores read Raga seven, Cabestany twelve, Fujinami fifteen, Bou twenty three and most incredibly Lampkin twenty three, after it seemed unlikely that the British would not even start. Lampkin looked to riding in a lot of pain and selected not to ride the more dangerous hazards in order not to risk more damage to his hip.

The second and final lap was conducted at pace and in increasing heat, making conditions even more difficult than this morning. As yesterday Raga faded in the closing stages, but still did enough to take his second victory in a row and further extended his championship advantage. In the same way Fajardo produced a miracle lap losing just eight marks to pull himself into third place at the finish. Cabestany also could not match his earlier performance, but another consistent lap allowed him to claim the runners up position. Bou and Freixa completed the top five respectively, but the ride of the day belonged to Lampkin who took sixth position despite his injury. Fujinami's day fell apart, his second lap was a complete disaster leaving him down in a lowly eighth.

Takahisa Fujinami (J-Honda)

Laia Sanz

Raga 1st:
“It is another good victory for me and my team, and an important one in terms of the championship. I am now riding at a good level and with the bike working well too it gives me a lot of confidence going to the other rounds. After this weekend, I believe if we continue to work in the same way, we now have a real chance to take the title, but I still know that it is going to be a tough battle right through to the end.”

Cabestany 2nd:
“Second is OK, as in the championship I am still close to Raga and to the fight for the title. I began very well today, but towards the end of the first lap I made some big mistakes that cost me the lead. It was very much the same on the second lap too, with three fives since section eight. In this way I know that it is impossible to take the victory. Again today I am not happy with either the sections or the observers, I feel the level has been the worst this year.”

Fajardo 3rd:
“My riding was quite bad on the first lap, it seem impossible for me to find the same level that I had had yesterday. Anyway I am not too sure what changed, but I rode an almost perfect second lap. To only lose eight marks in these sections, I think this is the best anyone can achieved, so for this reason I am especially happy.”

Freixa 5th:
“The result is a little better than Saturday, but really it is the same problem again. Like yesterday I made a bad first lap, and then a much better second lap, the problem with this is that you can not arrive in the podium in this way, and then only a top five result is possible.”

Lampkin 6th:
“I think this is the best I could have hoped for today, as I really didn't think that I would be able to ride. Everything had gone as well as could be, right up to section ten on the second lap and then at that point I simply couldnt give anymore. My legs had gone and my head was in a mess, this resulted in three fives in a row, other that I think I have done my absolute best given my condition.”

Fujinami 8th:
“The second lap has been a complete disaster, I have taken five maximums plus many other marks. It is a big disaster, especially for the championship as it will now be difficult to close on Raga and Cabestany. Yesterday during the last part of the trial I had had some physical problems, but today it was much worse both physically and mentally.”

Laia Sanz -
"Repsol Montesa HRC endured another difficult day in the Junior class, finishing in tenth place. As I said yesterday the steps are too big and overall the course has been too tough for me. Also with the conditions being so hot I really have struggled physically. I would prefer to forget this weekend."

2005 World Outdoor Trials Championship Round 6 : France

1 Adam Raga (E-Gas Gas)
2 Jeroni Fajardo (E-Gas Gas)
3 Albert Cabestany (E-Sherco)
4 Antonio Bou (E-Beta)
5 Takahisa Fujinami (J-Honda)
6 Marc Freixa (E-Montesa)
7 Kenichi Kuroyama (J-Beta)
8 Graham Jarvis (GB-Sherco)
9 Jordi Pascuet (E-Gas Gas)
10 Tadeusz Blazusiak (POL-Gas Gas)
11 Fumitaka Nozaki (J-Scorpa)
12 Doug Lampkin (GB-Montesa)
13 Shaun Morris (GB-Gas Gas)
14 Sam Connor (GB-Sherco)
15 Christophe Bruand (FRA-Gas Gas)

1 Adam Raga (E-Gas Gas)
2 Albert Cabestany (E-Sherco)
3 Jeroni Fajardo (E-Gas Gas)
4 Antonio Bou (E-Beta)
5 Marc Freixa (E-Montesa)
6 Doug Lampkin (GB-Montesa)
7 Kenichi Kuroyama (J-Beta)
8 Takahisa Fujinami (J-Honda)
9 Graham Jarvis (GB-Sherco)
10 Tadeusz Blazusiak (POL-Gas Gas)
11 Fumitaka Nozaki (J-Scorpa)
12 Jordi Pascuet (E-Gas Gas)
13 Jerome Bethume (F-Gas Gas)
14 Marcel Justribo (E-Montesa)
15 Isao Shibuya (JPN-Scorpa)

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