Trials

Jaime Busto Rebounds for TrialGP of Portugal Day Two Win

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Photo of TrialsGP rider Jaime Busto at the 2023 TrialGP of Portugal
Jaime Busto has continued his strong start to the 2023 FIM Trial World Championship with a pair of powerful performances at round two of the series culminating in a win on Sunday. Photo: Futur7Media

Jaime Busto returned to the top of the premier class podium on day two of the TrialGP of Portugal – round two of the 2023 Hertz FIM Trial World Championship – at Gouveia today following a super-tense second lap.

Conditions were drier than on Saturday with only minor overnight alterations to a handful of sections as huge boulders and steep bankings once again challenged the best riders on the planet.

Just like yesterday, Toni Bou set the pace on the opening lap of twelve sections and the sixteen-time champion’s total of seven opened up a healthy five-mark advantage ahead of his fellow Spaniard. However, also just like yesterday, Busto improved dramatically on his second lap with just a dab on section two – despite mechanical issues near the end – giving him a single-mark win after Bou took a costly maximum on his final visit to section seven.

“For me, it’s been an incredible weekend,” Busto said. “Not the easiest because I’m not used to this much water and on Saturday it caught me a bit off-guard – I wasn’t feeling so good, but I managed to fight and got a second place. Today from the beginning I was feeling much better, and I just kept my head clear, did what I had to do, and got the win. I had a lot of pressure, but I felt so good on the bike and it feels great to leave Portugal on the same points as Toni at the top of the championship.”

Photo of TrialsGP rider Toni Bou at the 2023 TrialGP of Portugal
Toni Bou, the reigning champion of the outdoor discipline is joint leader of the series, alongside Jaime Busto on 74 points.

Bou and Busto now leave Portugal once again tied on points at the head of the championship table. For Bou second was still a good result.

“Overall it was a good race. We knew that today would be more difficult, that all the other riders would make fewer mistakes, and that’s how it went,” Bou reflected. “A mistake on the first lap meant that we dropped a few points, but then we were able to come back. On the second lap, we were four points ahead and I made a mistake in a river area. We were riding on the limit. The position is good for the championship. The next round is in Japan where it is always a special race for our team. We have achieved great results there and we will be very motivated in a tight series, so we will give 100%.”

Exciting young gun Gabriel Marcelli was in contention at the halfway mark tied on twelve with Busto but his challenge dropped away on lap two although he still claimed his third podium finish from the opening four rounds.

“I think the day went very well. I made a few too many mistakes, which I would have liked to have avoided, but we rode very well and the team did a great job,” Marcelli said. “We are happy with the result, the points are good for the championship and we must continue in the same vein. We have shown that we have a lot of perseverance and that we are very consistent. This is a very good sign for Japan and this result has given me a boost in confidence, which ensures that we can be on the podium in every race. Now we will have to go to Japan looking for a little more.”

Veteran Adam Raga never quite got to terms with the top three and had to settle for fourth again with Italy’s Matteo Grattarola fifth for the second time this weekend.

The action now moves over eleven-thousand kilometres east to the Mobility Resort Motegi for the TrialGP of Japan on 19-21 May.

Photo of TrialsGP rider Gabriel Marcelli at the 2023 TrialGP of Portugal
Gabriel Marcelli repeated the podium he had taken the previous day in Portugal. He is third in the series with 58 points.

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