The battle for supremacy in the Trial2 class of this year’s Hertz FIM Trial World Championship will be decided at a thrilling seventh and final round – the TrialGP of France on 1-3 September at Vertolaye – with four riders still in with a mathematical chance of winning.
Out of the leading quartet, the two hot favourites are Britain’s Billy Green (Scorpa) and Jack Peace (Sherco) who sit first and second separated by six points while defending champion Sondre Haga (GASGAS) from Norway is thirty-seven points off the pace in fourth and, realistically, out of contention.
The final member of the awesome foursome is third-placed Pablo Suarez (Montesa) who is sixteen points behind Green. With a maximum of forty points up for grabs in France, the twenty-two-year-old from Oviedo in Spain has a lot of ground to make up, but in a season where consistency – or the lack of it – has played a major role he should not be ruled out.
Introduced to Trial by his father at a very young age, Suarez has also competed at an International level in Biketrial, but it is the motorised version of the sport where he truly excels with one rider in particular inspiring him.
“Since I was a kid my eyes have always been on Toni Bou,” he said. “I have always watched other riders to try to improve so I have always imitated what stands out from one or the other, but the posters and signatures were always Toni’s.”
After finishing third in Trial3 in 2018, Suarez moved up to Trial2 and has progressed every season, ending 2022 in a strong second behind Haga before starting his 2023 campaign on top, backing up a victory on the opening day in Spain with third on day two.
“Last year I did not manage to win the title, so this year we had to go for it. Winning in Arteixo was motivation and confidence to know that I can do it, but it is very difficult because the level is very close and it is difficult to make a difference.”
Despite dropping off the pace at round two in Portugal, he was back on the podium on the opening day of the Taisei Rotec TrialGP of Japan before disaster struck on the Sunday at Mobility Resort Motegi.
“In section ten on the first lap I had a fall that caused me an ankle injury that is still giving me problems, I could hardly walk. For the second lap they taped my foot and I tried to finish as best I could.”
Ending the day in twelfth having added just four more points to his total, Suarez looked to be out of the title hunt, but his determination – and his rivals’ occasional lack of form – has seen him drag himself back into contention.
“With such tight races the championship is not over until the last section. My [ultimate] goal is to fight to be as high as possible in TrialGP, I am working hard for it. Every rider dreams of being world champion so my goal is to try to do it.”
All the action from Vertolaye will be streamed LIVE on FIM-MOTO.TV.
The cost is for €7.99 for full weekend coverage or €24.99 for the new mid-season pass, including the FIM Trial des Nations.
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