The Repsol Honda Trial Team duo of Toni Bou and Takahisa Fujinami will this Sunday compete in the fifth event of the FIM X-Trial World Championship, due to take place at the Palau Sant Jordi Olympic arena in Barcelona.
This Sunday, February 4 at 17:00 sees the 41st edition of the blue riband event of the indoor trial competition held in Barcelona. For Toni Bou, Takahisa Fujinami and the Repsol Honda Team, this fifth trial of the FIM X-Trial World Championship calendar will be a chance to perform before a crowd on home ground.
Toni Bou holds the record for victories at the event, with a total of eleventh triumphs, the last nine achieved consecutively. The Repsol Honda Team rider is the clear favourite to take the top prize, but to do so will involve a tough battle in the very demanding sections of the Palau Sant Jordi which always test riders and machine to the limit.
"Barcelona indoor is our home trial and there is no greater motivation than trying to win at home, in the Palau Sant Jordi and in front of our home crowd," Bou said. "We‰Ûªve had a good spell but, if we want to achieve the main objective, we have to continue down the same track. This trial will definitely be one of the most difficult of the year and there‰Ûªs nothing we want more than to see the spectators enjoy a great trial.
Bou currently leads the provisional table of the top category and a new triumph would edge the rider closer still to the coveted 12th X-Trial title. As the championship arrives at its halfway point, the current gap over the nearest second-place rival stands at twenty-six points.
Repsol Honda Team‰Ûªs Japanese rider Takahisa Fujinami will also participate in Barcelona for the third time in the 2018 X-Trial season. In Toulouse the veteran posted fifth overall; a position that the rider is determined to improve upon.
"This will be my third indoor trial this year and I would like to continue improving on my results," Fujinami said. "The trial of Barcelona is one of the ones that nobody wants to miss, but at the same time, the sections of the Palau Sant Jordi are always really demanding. We know that it will be difficult to grab a good result, but, as always, we will fight hard to achieve it.
The trial at Barcelona‰Ûªs Palau Sant Jordi gets underway at 17:00 with the qualifying phase. The semi-final is scheduled for 18:45, ahead of the final, expected to commence at 20:00 hrs.
Main Photo: Toni Bou