Top Four X-Trial Finish For Fajardo
- Vertigo Motors Press Service
The 2016 FIM X-Trial World Championship came to a close in the French city of Marseille, with this marking the fourth and final stop of the short series that got underway in Sheffield, Great Britain back in early January. Vertigo factory rider Jeroni Fajardo completed his first championship aboard his Combat by claiming fourth overall in the final rankings and in doing so claimed the highest position for the new Spanish brand since it made its debut on this the highest stage just last season.
The Palais des Sports has a long history of being a tough venue with the atmosphere inside the arena creating a tense competition. The latest edition of this long standing event proved to be no different with qualification taking place over five long and ultra technical sections after the riders had first raced in their respective pairings to determine who would tackle the hazards first.
Using the power of the two stroke fuel injected engine Fajardo was fast over the ground as he defeated Cabestany in their head to head sprint, a result that would then allow him to follow his Spanish compatriot and rival through each section as they made their way around the opening lap. The first rocky hazard confirmed the theme of the evening with the sheer length of challenge proving to be equally as testing as each of the technical parts. Jeroni opened his account well with just a single time penalty to add to his otherwise clean ride.
Unfortunately Fajardo was unable to repeat the same level of performance in the second section of the night as the concrete columns saw him record his first failure of the competition. Jeroniâ€™s passage through the following two hazards put him back on course, he parted with two dabs and one time fault on the logs in section three before then losing yet another mark on time as he raced his way across the metal containers in the penultimate section.
With a place in the final for the fourth time in a row looking almost certain Fajardo was then to fall short at the final test in the fifth and last section, this maximum score was to prove costly as Jeroni missed out of taking his spot in the main event by a single mark. His fifth position on the night was however sufficient to protect his fourth place in the final general standings.
Summing up the series Vertigo Sports Team Manager Dougie Lampkin said. "I think we can be happy with fourth place in the championship when you consider the pedigree of the other riders in the series and those that filled the top three places. Like I said before Jeroni is still new to the bike and the team and has adapted well and in terms of our performance in this championship we have shown a good level of improvement since we made our debut just last season. Although this series has now closed we are already working and have been for some time to be in the best condition for the start of the outdoor championship in a couple of weeks time."
Fajardo ended by saying. "It is never easy to guarantee your place in the final four and tonight although I came close I just failed to reach my first objective. With only four events in such a short period it has been a tough challenge to learn the bike and gain the results we were looking for as a team. As Dougie said overall we can be happy with how things have gone and now we can look forward to the start of the next championship where again we hope we can be competitive and show the true potential of the Combat at the highest level and against the best riders in the World."