Riders in the KTM Enduro Factory Team picked up a slew of podiums in Rds. 5 & 6 of the World Championships in Munitibar in the autonomous Basque region of Northern Spain at the weekend, particularly underlining their dominance in E1 and E3 classes.
The team’s new French signings Christophe Nambotin and Antoine Meo both drew respect and praise from team boss Fabio Farioli when they continued their unbeaten record so far this season. Both riders have cleaned up every round in the E1 and the E3 classes and leave Spain with a perfect scorecard of 120 points each.
“Nambotin was incredible this weekend,” Farioli said. “He was perfect and Meo also was excellent this weekend.” Indeed the pair cleaned up in the majority of the tests over the two days of intense riding on the 3 x 70 km laps. Farioli said muddy and slippery conditions had prevailed over the weekend and the extreme test had proved very difficult because there were many different lines in the mud.
While Meo won eight of nine tests on Saturday and continued to dominate the E1 class on Sunday, his teammate Eero Remes was not so lucky. Remes finished third on Saturday and was in the lead on Sunday when he was forced to retire with a technical problem.
The E2 class riders also put in a solid weekend, particularly Cristobal Guerrero of Spain who wrapped up the weekend with an excellent 3-2 result. While he didn’t take the outright victories team boss Farioli said he was always very close to the top and was confident that he would be delivering top performances in future rounds. Johnny Aubert, Guerrero’s teammate finished second on Saturday just 20 seconds in front of the winner Pierre Alexandre Renet with teammate Guerrero closing in just 10 seconds behind him. Aubert went on to finish fourth on Sunday and is beginning to find his rhythm after a slower than usual start to the season in the four South American rounds.
David Knight, the second E3 factory rider is having some difficulty matching the pace of Nambotin but was still very strong and on the podium twice this weekend. He was second on Saturday and third on Sunday to complete an excellent weekend for the team.
In the EJ division KTM’s Jonathan Manzi of Italy and Cristobal’s brother Victor Guerrero were 2-3 on Saturday and 2-6 respectively on Sunday while Giacomo Redondi secured two wins in the Youth Cup.
Meo now has a 37-point lead in E1 and Nambotin has a 24-point lead over teammate Knight in E3. In E2 Guerrero trails the leader Renet by just four points.
Riders convene next weekend for the next two rounds in the GP of Portugal.