The ninety-sixth edition of the FIM International Six Days of Enduro (ISDE) is up and running, with Spain out to an early World Trophy team lead on Day One in Le Puy-En-Velay, France.
It was down to the serious business of racing for the competitors from thirty-two nations in this year’s FIM ISDE. Glorious sunshine greeted those with an early start time this morning as they left the start ramp for the first time.
Daniel Milner was Australia’s highest place rider with 7th in the overall standings. Andrew Wilksch was 30th, Todd Waters 38th, and Kyron Bacon 30th. Josh Green finished in the top 50 with 43rd While Blake Hollis was 82nd.
Daniel Milner was 3rd in the E1 class while Kyron Bacon was 13th, Josh Green 16th, and Blake Hollis 30th. In E2 our best performer was Todd Waters in 17th. In E3 Andrew Wilksch was 8th fastest.
Immediately setting the pace, Spain’s Josep Garcia hit the front by setting the quickest time on the first of the day’s five special tests. Garcia was not hanging about today and went on to dominate all five tests.
Strong support from his teammates ensured Spain would lead the World Trophy classification by twenty-two seconds at the end of Day One.
“I won every test today, so it has been a great start to the week,” told Garcia at the end of Day One. “I just tried to be smart with my riding and push at a comfortable level. I’m happy to have put a result in like that on Day One.
“Overall, it is brilliant to lead the World Trophy classification with Spain. We are really motivated for this and want to do our country proud.”
While Spain carved out an early lead, behind them Italy and Great Britain are separated by just fractions of a second. Italy, in second place, is just three hundredths of a second in front of Great Britain.
A further four seconds behind Great Britain are the United States in fourth. The United States figures highly in the overall individual results and will look to close that gap to Italy and Great Britain on Day Two.
Home favourites France got their FIM ISDE off to a solid start on Day One, finishing fifth overall. However, they are already one minute behind leaders Spain and will need to fight back tomorrow.
Positions sixth to tenth are a little more spread out. Bolstered by Mikael Persson ending his day in third overall, Sweden are sixth.
Australia and Belgium ended day one in seventh and eighth respectively. Completing the top ten World Trophy nations are Finland and Poland.
Junior World Trophy
Defending nation Italy have shot out to an early in the Junior World Trophy class leading closest rivals Finland by over one minute and thirty-two seconds, with Great Britain in third.
Drama hit home nation France with team rider Antoine Alix exiting the race with a mechanical issue in the opening special test.
Sweden and the United States also suffered similar problems on Day One with both nations each losing a rider to drop them out of the running order.
However, at the head of the standings it was all about Italy. Collectively the trio of Morgan Lesiardo, Enrico Rinaldi and Claudio Spanu looked impressively strong as they stretched out a comfortable lead to top the opening day of racing.
Behind them, Finland slotted into second. Great Britain sits third overall on Day One to match their position in the provisional World Trophy standings and are about thirty three seconds behind Finland.
Chile enjoyed a strong start to their week with fourth, while Czech Republic rounding out the top five.
While France’s hopes of a Junior World Trophy win ended early on Day One, Zach Pichon still gave them reason to cheer by finishing as the fastest Junior Trophy rider in sixth overall.
“It’s disappointing for the team to see our chances end today, but for myself it has been a good start to my first FIM ISDE,” said Pichon.
“Leading the Junior World Trophy riders, but also to end the day in sixth overall is a little surprising, but good for the confidence at the same time.”
Women’s World Trophy
Defending champions The United States leads the Women’s World Trophy category.
Eager to make their mark in France, the United States were unstoppable today. Brandy Richards and Korie Steede finished first and second in the individual women’s classification, and with teammate Rachel Gutish close behind in sixth, the USA ends Day One with a healthy three minute and fifty-five second lead over Great Britain, with France in third.
From the first of today’s five special tests, Richards was on top form. Winning the opening special test, she was never headed for the rest of the day and comfortably topped the classification by one minute and fourteen seconds.
“It’s awesome to start off today with a team win and be first in class,” said Richards. “You never quite know how the opening day will go, but we were determined to make the best of it.
“We don’t race this format of Enduro at home, so it’s rewarding to be on pace already. Let’s hope we can build on this for tomorrow!”
The fight for second was close with Steede battling hard with Great Britain’s Jane Daniels. The duo swapped positions during the day before Steede finally got the upper hand on the final test.
Ending Day One in third, France will be pleased with their efforts today. Multiple FIM ISDE champions Australia completes the top four, with Sweden Spain next in fifth.
SCRATCH RESULTS – INDIVIDUAL OVERALL