Team France has extended its lead at the International Six Days Enduro in Mexico after another stunning performance on day two yesterday.
Day two took place under slightly cooler skies, with occasional cloud cover offering the riders some relief from the otherwise blistering Mexican heat.
But, whilse the weather may have been kinder to the competitors it still proved to be a challenging day, both on the time controls and in the special tests. With the course showing the effects of having been ridden on day one, racing in Morelia was every bit as exciting as on the opening day.
For Trophy team leaders France it was an eventful day – one in which team riders came close to winning the E1, E2, and E3 classes. As it turned out Antoine Meo (Husqvarna) (pictured above) led home the E1 class riders while Johnny Aubert (KTM) did exactly the same to top the E2 category. In the E3 class Seb Guillaume (Husqvarna) missed the top spot by a fraction of a second, but played an important role in ensuring France claimed a second consecutive Trophy team class win.
However it was not all good news for France as Nicolas Deparrois (Kawasaki) damaged a radiator early in the day and was forced to change the leaking part, losing 10 minutes and eventually finishing 47th in E2. The team’s final rider Rodrig Thain placed fifth in E2, despite getting stuck in one of the day’s nine special tests. France’s impressive performances saw them extend their lead to close to four-and-a-half minutes ahead of second-placed Italy.
Second in the Trophy Team competition Italy finished just over two minutes behind France with Alex Salvini delivering the team’s best performance with second in the E1 class. Finland’s Trophy Team produced a solid day and hold third, some six minutes behind France. USA are placed fourth with Poland and Chile fifth and sixth. Poland’s most experienced competitor Bartosz Oblucki failed to finish the day.
In the Junior Trophy competition it was Sweden who claimed the day win, helped greatly by consistently fast riding from all of their four team members and a costly mistake on one of the special tests by Spanish rider Victor Guerrero, who got stuck in a muddy rut in much the same way as France Trophy team rider Thain did.
Finishing nine seconds ahead of Spain and reducing the Spaniards overall class lead, Henrik Lindholm (KTM) produced Sweden’s best performance.
Behind Sweden and Spain it was France who placed third. After two days of competition Spain’s youngsters remain out front, over one-and-a-half minutes up on Sweden. With all four of the team’s riders performing well their stand out rider was again Oriol Mena (Husaberg). Winner of the E3 class on day one, Mena claimed a second consecutive class win, managing to stay ahead of eventual E3 runner-up Seb Guillaume by the narrowest of margins.
As well as staying at the top of the Trophy Team results France also stay as the nation to beat in the Women’s Cup. Finishing five minutes ahead of Sweden at the end of the second day’s competition France are now placed ten minutes ahead of Sweden in the overall Women’s Cup classification. At the end of a day in which all but two countries saw at least one of their women riders fail to finish, France’s Blandine Dufrene was the fastest women racer.
When it comes to the individual capacity classes France’s Meo (Husqvarna) leads the way in E1 ahead of Finland’s Eero Remes (KTM) and Italian Salvini (Husqvarna). In the E2 category France’s Aubert (KTM) has already amassed a sizeable near two-and-a-half minute advantage over Italians Manuel Monni (Yamaha) and Thomas Oldrati (KTM). Spain’s Oriol Mena (Husaberg) sits at the top of the E3 class, less than half a second ahead of France’s Guillaume. Third is another Frenchman, Christophe Nambotin (Gas Gas), while Mexico’s top performer Homero Diaz sits a highly creditable fifth.
AFTER DAY TWO:
© Photo by Jake Miller