Returning to action for the penultimate round of the series in Bilbao, Spain, Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Billy Bolt overcame a tough day at the office to maintain his top-three position in the overall championship standings by placing fourth overall. Teammate Colton Haaker fought through a mixture of crashes and misfortune to end his night sixth.
With Bilbao marking the home straight of this year’s SuperEnduro series, Bolt arrived at the Bizkaia Arena in northern Spain determined to conserve his championship position, while hopeful of adding another podium result to his tally. Placing a strong second in the SuperPole, the Husqvarna rider looked to build on that during the night’s three finals.
Frustratingly, a series of bad starts hampered his progress during the first two finals, with Billy finishing fourth each time out. Working hard to turn his fortunes around, the young Brit started second behind the event’s eventual overall winner Taddy Blazusiak in the third final and controlled his position during the six-minute plus one lap race to leave Bilbao on a positive note.
For defending champion Colton Haaker, the night’s racing didn’t go as he’d hoped. Despite feeling comfortable and riding well during the afternoon’s practice sessions, a succession of unfortunate crashes and arm pump prevented the Husqvarna rider from showing his true form. Ending with a 5-6-5 scorecard for sixth overall, Colton will aim to turn his fortunes around at the championship finale in Lidköping, Sweden at the end of the month.
The 2018 FIM SuperEnduro World Championship concludes with the final round of the series in Sweden on March 31st.
Billy Bolt: “It’s been a bit of a frustrating night for me here in Bilbao. I’m not really able to pin-point why but I wasn’t happy with my riding in all three races. Honestly, I just never felt comfortable all night and when I needed to up my pace to catch someone I wasn’t really able to do it. Of course there are positives to take from it, I’m still a rookie in this series so finishing fourth overall despite the issues, I suppose is not too bad. Also, I’m still third overall in the championship heading into the final round in Sweden at the end of the month. I really want to end the championship inside the top three, so I’ll work hard, come in focused to Sweden and hopefully deliver a better result.”
Colton Haaker: “I don’t really know what to say — tonight was tough, tougher than it should have been. I felt good in practice and was riding well but once the start gate dropped on the main event weird things happened. I led race one for three laps but soon struggled with arm pump and just wasn’t able to ride like I should. I couldn’t really shake that arm pump off for the remainder of the night and as a result I had too many crashes. Overall, it was a night I’d rather forget. We have about three weeks now to prepare for the final round of the series in Sweden and I want to set things right there and at the very least end the championship on a high note.”
Results — FIM SuperEnduro World Championship, Round 4
Prestige Class — Overall
1. Taddy Blazusiak (KTM) 54pts; 2. Jonny Walker (KTM) 48pts; 3. Cody Webb (KTM) 47pts; 4. Billy Bolt (Husqvarna) 45pts; 5. Manuel Lettenbichler (KTM) 33pts; 6. Colton Haaker (Husqvarna) 32pts…
Prestige Race 1
1. Cody Webb (KTM) 9 laps, 6:52.935; 2. Taddy Blazusiak (KTM) 6:57.542; 3. Jonny Walker (KTM) 7:05.066;4. Billy Bolt (Husqvarna) 7:05.710; 5. Colton Haaker (Husqvarna) 7:35.973…
Prestige Race 2
1. Cody Webb (KTM) 9 laps, 6:51.550; 2. Taddy Blazusiak (KTM) 6:53.260; 3. Jonny Walker (KTM) 7:11.198; 4. Billy Bolt (Husqvarna) 7:36.274; 5. Manuel Lettenbichler (KTM) 7:36.566; 6. Colton Haaker (Husqvarna) 8 laps, 6:58.179…
Prestige Race 3
1. Taddy Blazusiak (KTM) 9 laps, 6:52.169; 2. Billy Bolt (Husqvarna) 7:12.928; 3. Jonny Walker (KTM) 7:18.505; 4. Manuel Lettenbichler (KTM) 7:40.401; 5. Colton Haaker (Husqvarna) 8 laps, 7:01.841…
Championship Standings (After round 4)
1. Cody Webb (KTM) 202pts; 2. Taddy Blazusiak (KTM) 185pts; 3. Billy Bolt (Husqvarna) 169pts; 4. Jonny Walker (KTM) 153pts; 5. Colton Haaker (Husqvarna) 146pts; 6. Manuel Lettenbichler (KTM) 132pts; 7. Alfredo Gomez (Husqvarna) 105pts…