The HM Honda Zanardo team enjoyed a strong weekend at the Grand Prix of Finland for round seven of the Enduro World Championship in Heinola this weekend with Simone Albergoni going 6-1 and Rodrig Thain 3-6 across the two days.
In a weekend that gave twists, turns and great emotion for the Italian team, Albergoni took victory on the second day of the race weekend and became the first Italian this year to win a day of the Enduro World Championship.
On day one Albergoni was close in contention, in fact in the last special test he had a deficit of only four seconds from first place. Unfortunately a fall and the loss of almost 50 seconds meant that the Honda rider was unable to take a podium finish. This was a disappointment, but the team was pleased with his performance as he attacked with determination where only the best were able to race in the special test, which was around 11 minutes long.
On day two Albergoni eliminated the mistakes, giving his best in each test and arriving at the last special test just a few seconds behind first position. This time Albergoni put on a strong display of riding without error to take the top step of the podium.
Thain also enjoyed a good weekend with a third place on day one, while on day two he ended up sixth due to a fall.
Simone Albergoni – “On Sunday it was a great thrill to win here in Finland. I dedicate this, my first victory, to the unforgotten friend and five-time World Champion Mika Ahola. In the past I have been here to train with Mika. He taught me a lot about riding on sandy ground through the woods of his homeland. We all remember him with great affection not only for his career, but also for his cheerfulness, truthfulness and fairness. On Saturday I tried to win, and in the second part of the race I was close to first place, but then I crashed and I lost a lot of time. On Sunday I turned my misfortune into revenge to take the first step of the podium. I want to say thanks to the whole team; to the technicians, to my sponsors and to Franco Mayr, who encouraged me in these last two days of competition."
Franco Mayr: HM Honda Zanardo Team Manager – “Finally Simone gave us a great performance, which is a credit to the whole team. In Sweden last week both Albergoni and Thain did not race particularly strongly, as they struggled with the ground in the special test. Here in Finland they have turned it around and for us their results are a great boost for the final race of the season next month that we will go into even more determined”.