For the second consecutive Round, the FIM X-Trial World Championship welcomes a new arena to the calendar
The Arkéa Arena in the French city of Bordeaux hosts Round Four of the 2023 X-Trial World Championship this Friday 7th April, the final date before the series’ summer break.
In three Rounds thus far, only four different men have made it onto the podium. Toni Bou (Repsol Honda Trial Team) leads the series with two victories and a second place, ahead of the only other winner Jaime Busto (GasGas) who has also posted two third position finishes. Gabriel Marcelli (Repsol Honda Trial Team) has twice made the rostrum, but was denied by Adam Raga (TRRS) at X-Trial Wiener Neustadt.
After winning the inaugural X-Trial Pamplona less than two weeks ago, Toni Bou will be keen to add another city to his incredible World Championship record. That most recent win, under intense pressure particularly in the opening phases of competition, has enabled Bou to open a 12 point gap to closest rival Busto and 18 to teammate Marcelli. Both young guns will know that beating the 16-times World Champion in Bordeaux, before the long wait to X-Trial Andorra in October, is the only way to keep themselves in contention for the title. Meanwhile, veteran Adam Raga has found himself cut ten points adrift of the medal positions; he will be keen to roll back the years and bridge the gap at least to Marcelli.
Behind, a separate struggle has been raging for fifth position in the Championship Standings. Eighteen points back from Raga sits Toby Martyn (Montesa) who is fresh from his best result of the season at X-Trial Pamplona. Aniol Gelabert (Beta) sits only two behind the Brit despite missing the season opener.
Benoit Bincaz (Sherco) will be among the star attractions as X-Trial makes its first visit of three visits to France for this season. The home man has yet to really put his best foot forward in 2023, and he must make an immediate response to his underwhelming display in Navarra a fortnight ago.
An unchanged line-up for this latest event sees Sondre Haga (GasGas) and Matteo Grattarola (Vertigo) complete the field. Grattarola has thus far found adaptation to new machinery unexpectedly challenging with pre-season injuries taking their toll.
All roads lead to the Arkéa Arena in the Floirac area on the outskirts of Bordeaux. Formerly known as the Bordeaux Metropole Arena, the venue opened in 2018 with a Depeche Mode concert attended by 11,000 spectators.
The first X-Trial Bordeaux gets underway at 20:45 local time. Be sure not to miss a thing by watching live on www.x-trial.tv