With an Enduro Junior class win on day one for Mathias Bellino, a day two runner-up result for Joakim Ljunggren in Enduro 3 and a day one runner-up result in Enduro 2 for Pela Renet the fifth round of the 2012 EWC series ended on a highly positive note for the Husaberg Factory Team.
With temperatures soaring above 40 degree Celsius the fifth round of the EWC series was much more than just another hot, dry and dusty event – it was the toughest of the season so far and one that pushed riders and their machines to their limits. Faced with four punishing laps each day, come the end of the event all Husaberg Factory Team riders were pleased to see the finish.
As leader of the Enduro 2 class Pela Renet arrived in Italy looking to continue the impressive form that saw him secure victory on day two of the GP of Portugal. Well prepared for the dry and rocky conditions the Frenchman produced a solid ride on day one to claim third, but saw his luck run out on day two when a derailed chain dramatically effected his result.
In the Enduro 3 class Joakim Ljunggren enjoyed a great weekend, placing on the podium on both days. Enjoying the rough and tough conditions, the Swede delivered his best result on day two when he placed as runner-up to E3 championship leader Christophe Nambotin.
Joakim’s E3 team-mate Oriol Mena claimed fourth and fifth place results. Generally pleased with his weekend’s work Oriol wasn’t quite able to match the pace of his rivals on the enduro test, which prevented him from placing higher.
A determined performance in the Enduro Junior class saw Mathias Bellino claim another day win, but having given his all on day one the Frenchman was unable to challenge eventual day two winner Jonathan Manzi. Feeling the effects of a tough opening day Bellino opted not to try and win, instead he rode with his championship lead in mind and claimed a well-deserved third place.
First time EWC racer Jane Daniels from Great Britain secured a hard fought third place result in the Woman’s class aboard her Husaberg on day one. Despite needing to be re-hydrated by medical staff at the end of the day the plucky youngster enjoyed podium success first time out aboard her TE 125.
Pela Renet – Enduro 2: “Day one was a good day for me and I finished third but on day two I had no luck. I was leading the race until the second enduro test but during the test my chain came off and it wrapped about the front sprocket. It took me almost four minutes to repair the damage. After that I pushed hard to recover and salvage some points, eventually I finished 13th. It’s unfortunate because I was feeling very strong, but that’s part of racing and sometimes these things happen. I’m looking forward to Sweden now. I feel the conditions will be more to my liking so hopefully I can secure some good points there and return to the podium.”
Joakim Ljunggren – Enduro 3: “I’m very happy with my results this weekend and I enjoyed the difficult conditions. During day one, David (Knight) and Christophe (Nambotin) were a little bit faster than me. I tried my best to match their pace but it wasn’t quite possible. During the evening I re-walked the extreme test and found some new lines, which really helped.
“Day two was much better. These dry and rocky conditions seem to suit me and I think it showed in my results. It was a good fight throughout the day and I felt I could race with Christophe and David all day. To only finish 11 seconds away from winning is very positive and I feel it is a big step forward. The next round of the championship is my home race in Sweden so hopefully I can continue to do well there.”
Oriol Mena – Enduro 3: “Finishing fourth and fifth was good but I feel it could be better. I was fast on both the cross test and the extreme test but struggled on the enduro test. I need to improve on this test if I want to close the gap to those in front of me.”
Mathias Bellino – Enduro Junior: “Day one was a hard day but a good one. I made a big mistake on the third extreme test on day one, and lost about 20 seconds, but I was still able to win. I was very pleased with that because the Italian rider Jonathan Manzi was very fast. I was so tired on day two. I pushed hard to win the first day and used a lot of energy. I just wanted to have a safe day and not make any unnecessary mistakes on day two, which I managed to do as well as finishing on the podium. I’m tired but pleased with my race.”