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The harsh demands of the Finnish GP make life difficult for the Gas Gas World Championship Enduro riders

14/06/2016
A tough weekend for the Gas Gas Factory Pons Team riders in the complicated specials with sand, roots and stones in the Finnish GP. This is one of the trickiest events in the World Championship because of its difficult terrain. Jonathan Barragán confirms his ever-upward results and enters the top five on Sunday with his best result so far in this World Championship. Diogo Ventura has two days of trouble in Heinola. The Portuguese rider manages to add valuable points on the second day for the Junior World Championship where he now occupies the fourth position.

It was a heavy going weekend for the Gas Gas Factory Pons Team riders in the Finnish GP. This is without a doubt one of the most special events in the Enduro calendar because of the terrain involved. This, the fifth event in the world championship, took us on a visit to the sandy forests of Heinola, the toughest terrain for both riders and mechanics in the World Enduro Championship. The specials were full of roots, and with huge holes made by the bikes. This meant the best path to take changed with every lap.

After the two latest GPs –Portugal and Greece- characterised by the heavy rain, water and mud, Jonathan Barragán and Diogo Ventura took up the challenge of the Finnish GP with the aim of taking advantage of their motocross ability on the Finnish sand in the first event in good European weather conditions. However the results were varied for the Gas Gas Factory Pons Team riders who started the fourth event with difficulty in adapting to the specials where new paths were being opened up every lap.

Jonathan Barragán finished 8th in E3 on Saturday after a complicated day. Although the following day after deciding where he could give it gas and where he should hold back, the rider from Madrid recovered self-confidence in his riding with his Gas Gas EC300 Racing. After this, his times were some of the best for this engine size and he finally ended up in the top five. A fifth position that represents a clear improvement for the Gas Gas rider whose results show a continuous upward tendency in the latest GP events in the World Championship. He is raring to go and just waiting to fight for a podium position in the next GPs. Barragán is now in the 8th position of the E3 general classification, after a start to the season where the results were not all they could have been.

In the Junior Category, Diogo Ventura suffered an especially difficult race. The Portuguese rider arrived at the Finnish GP with his heart set on fighting for the podium and keeping his second position in EJ. But a bad start to the race together with problems adapting to the complexity of the soft going terrain in the specials plus the fact that a large number of Scandinavian riders – who were only riding in this particular GP and the Swedish GP- got between him and the race leaders, put the young Portuguese Gas Gas rider into a difficult position. He finished Saturday with a rather low 18thposition and out of the range of any points. Conscious of the errors of the previous day, Ventura improved his times on Sunday finishing in 9th position and grasping 7 more points. This result means a loss of position in the general classification for Gas Gas, now fourth, at 47 points from the leader, after just having crossed the halfway mark in the World Championship and with a total of 80 points still in play.

With hardly any time for a break, this week theGas Gas Factory Pons Team is heading next door to Sweden for the second stop on the “Scandinavian Tour” in the Enduro World Championship. Next weekend, 18th and 19thJune, the locality of Enköping is to play host to the fifth event of the calendar, the Swedish GP.

Jonathan Barragán: “The truth of the matter is that it has been a difficult weekend for us here in Finland. It was event on a pretty complicated track with plenty of sand and roots where it was difficult to get a feeling for the race. On Sunday things went much better than on the first day and I was in the five or six first places in my category. I am very happy with my second day although Saturday was difficult for me to find my pace. Having said that, I am pleased because we have been able to add points on both days in a race where quite a few riders in my category didn’t make it. Perhaps I’m not riding as fast as I’d like but I’m being consistent and we are improving every day.

Diogo Ventura: “This has been a difficult weekend for me. Saturday was one of the worst days in sporting career. I was a bit worried about the type of specials and I found it hard to get up to pace both with myself and with the bike. The truth is I couldn’t get my head round the course. On Sunday I made an effort to improve my results compared to the previous day. I got better pace in the specials although it was difficult. I did what I could and the positive aspect is that we got into the point-scoring zone. We are in a good position in the championship and there are still loads more races. I know we can do much more. I want to get back onto the podium as soon as possible and I hope this happens in the next race, in Sweden.

Enduro 3

First day

Points

Second day

Points

1. S. Holcombe

58:38.90

1. J. Aubert

1:01:16.96

2. J. Aubert

+1:29.15

2. J. Betriu

+7.90

3. A. Basset

+2:02.35

3. A. Basset

+15.36

8. J. Barragán (Gas Gas)

+5:17.13

5. J. Barragán (Gas Gas)

+2:02.89

Enduro Júnior

First day

Points

Second day

Points

1. G. Redondi

1:00:47.46

1. G. Redondi

1:01:27.29

2. J. García

+39.66

2. A. Elowson

+1:30.14

3. A. Elowson

+50.66

3. E. Pohjola

+1:48.63

18. D. Ventura (Gas Gas)

+4:32.09

9. D. Ventura (Gas Gas)

3:28.20

 

Enduro 3 – General classification

1. Steve Holcombe, 138 points

2. Johnny Aubert, 131 points.

3. Antoine Basset, 124 points.

8. Jonathan Barragán (Gas Gas), 64 points.

Enduro Junior – General classification

1. Steve Holcombe, 138 points

2. Albin Elowson, 102 pts.

3. Josep García, 93 pts.

4. Diogo Ventura (Gas Gas), 91 points.


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