Spanish superstar Toni Bou took another step towards an incredible 16th consecutive Hertz FIM Trial World Championship title when he completed a double win at Neunkirchen today.
Back on the calendar for the first time since 2016, the TrialGP of Germany – round three of the 2022 series – hasn’t disappointed with a huge turn-out of fans ensuring an incredible atmosphere across the weekend.
Torrential rain yesterday evening made the opening indoor-style sections very slippery with dirt dragged onto the rocks meaning grip was at a premium but as the day progressed the sections dried up.
While Bou’s 10-mark victory looks clear-cut, the results don’t tell the full story and following the opening lap his score of 12 put him three marks behind two-time Trial2 champion Matteo Grattarola from Italy.
However, the 35-year-old is notoriously cool under pressure and in the second half of the event, he put on a masterclass with a score of just three taking him to the top for the fourth time this year.
“I am very satisfied with the weekend here in Germany,” Bou said. “For us it was a complicated and uncomfortable trial, both yesterday and today. We knew we couldn’t make mistakes on the second day. It’s true that we made two serious mistakes on the first lap, although we were lucky that everyone made a few mistakes too. Looking ahead to the second lap, we knew that the rider who didn’t make a mistake would be the winner, so I tried my hardest. We made a small mistake in section six, but I also wanted to play it safe, because a five there could have meant losing the competition.
“Finally, in the last two sections were where we had to attack and do well. Fortunately, everything went well and we won the trial in section 11. In terms of the championship, it has been a very good weekend and it has been something exceptional because of everything that has happened. Now Jaime Busto is second, 23 points behind, and the truth is that being so many points ahead after only six rounds is really positive, although there is still a long way to go in the championship.”
Maximums on the final two sections of the day pushed Grattarola’s total to 25 but it was still good enough for second overall to match his best-ever finish in the elite TrialGP class.
Runner-up yesterday, Spain’s Jaime Busto was third after losing out on a tie-break with Grattarola which helped him strengthen his hold on second place in the standings after Adam Raga was disqualified when he exited the course and rode through a public viewing area in a reckless manner.
A further 15 marks behind, Jeroni Fajardo claimed fourth for the second time this weekend with his fellow Spaniard Miquel Gelabert again fifth on 44.
The world’s best trial riders now take a six-week break before round four of the Hertz FIM Trial World Championship – the TrialGP of Belgium – at Comblain au Pont on August 20-21.