Enduro

Billy Bolt Rules Straight Rhythm At Red Bull Abestone

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Photo of Billy Bolt at the 2022 Red Bull Abestone
With a win on day one Billy Bolt has announced himself as the man to beat at the 2022 Red Bull Abestone. Photo: Future7Media

Billy Bolt topped the standings on day one at round four of the FIM Hard Enduro World Championship at Italy’s Red Bull Abestone.

Defending world champion Bolt was fastest in the morning qualification before going on to win the evening’s JUST1 Straight Rhythm over Alfredo Gomez. Manuel Lettenbichler edged out Sweden’s Eddie Karlsson to complete the top three in Val di Luce.

Round four of the FIM Hard Enduro World Championship got underway at the now infamous Red Bull Abestone in Italy. Nestled in the Tuscany mountain peaks, it’s become a firm rider favourite thanks to its amazing landscape, stunning trails, and welcoming Italian hospitality.

Photo of Billy Bolt at the 2022 Red Bull Abestone
Billy Bolt dominated the Straight Rhythm. Photo: Future7Media

After Friday afternoon’s warm-up for competitors to stretch their legs, today saw racing begin in earnest. Spilt into two parts, the morning saw riders battle it out for a top-30 place in Sunday afternoon’s A Final, with the remainder of the entry contesting the Sunday morning B Final. The fastest 16 qualifiers also advanced through to this evening’s high action JUST1 Straight Rhythm in Val di Luce. With the Straight Rhythm results also determining the starting order for Sunday’s final, it ensured there was a lot to play for.

Just like he had done in 2021, Billy Bolt was on top form from the off. Bolt clearly favours Red Bull Abestone and was quick to make his mark in the morning qualifier. Setting the combined quickest time on the two special test loops, Billy topped the standings by an impressive 45 seconds over Lettenbichler in second.

Photo of Photo of Alfredo Gomez at the 2022 Red Bull AbestoneBilly Bolt at the 2022 Red Bull Abestone
Alfredo Gomez on his way to second on day one of the Red Bull Abestone in Italy. Photo: Future7Media

Poland’s Dominik Olszowy was third fastest this morning ahead of South African Wade Young, with Eddie Karlsson completing the top five. However, with the evening’s JUST1 Straight Rhythm still to come, that order was set to change as riders went head-to-head.

The first round of racing saw all of the heavy favourites advance through to round two where they were whittled down to four riders for the semi-finals. With pressure ramping up, Bolt disposed of Karlsson to secure his place in the final, while Gomez got the better of Lettenbichler.

Photo of Manuel Lettenbichler at the 2022 Red Bull Abestone
Manuel Lettenbichler during the Straight Rhythm run. Photo: Future7Media

Just like we had seen at the Straight Rhythm session from round two in Serbia, the final was a Bolt versus Gomez matchup. Gomez was determined not to be outdone this time around. However, Billy once more had the measure of him and pulled out all of the stops to take the win.

With Bolt and Gomez first and second respectively, Lettenbichler held off a hard-charging Karlsson to complete the top three in Val di Luce.

With qualification complete, Red Bull Abestone gets down to the business end of things on Sunday. First up is the two-hour long Mitas Final B, with the all-important LIQUI MOLY Final A starting at 13.00CET.

Photo of Billy Bolt at the 2022 Red Bull Abestone
Billy Bolt (C), Alfredo Gomez (R) and Manuel Lettenbichler (L) on the podium. Future7Media

Results – Red Bull Abestone, JUST1 Straight Rhythm
1 Billy Bolt (Husqvarna)
2 Alfredo Gomez (GASGAS)
3 Manuel Lettenbichler (KTM)
4 Eddie Karlsson (KTM)

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