Second round of the 2004 FIM Supermoto World Championship, the Grand Prix of Romania organized in Arad (third largest town in the west side of the country) has been dominated by the French riders, after the Italian domination in Spa. Jerome Giraudo won the three S2 races and offered to the 450 Aprilia a brilliant success, while re-comer Thierry Van Den Bosch won the three S1 races. Giraudo is now leading the S2 World Championship, while Boris Chambon holds now the red plate in the S1 class.

Difficult to say who was the happiest man Sunday evening in Arad! Was it Jerome Giraudo, who won his first Supermoto race since his debut in this series three years ago? Or was it Thierry Van Den Bosch, who didn’t celebrate any success since his last Supermoto win in 2002? Both had probably a similar feeling, but other men behind the scene were at least as happy as these riders: the technicians, mechanics, engineers of Aprilia who saw their “baby” winning his first Supermoto event, six months after his first appearance in Spa Francorchamps.

Pole-man on Saturday, Jerome Giraudo had a perfect weekend; he didn’t got the three “holeshot” as Adrien Chareyre was fastest than him at the start of the SuperFinal, but he led all the laps (12 in each Final and 24 in the Super Final) and never had to fight with other riders. A perfect weekend for him, who just let the fastest lap of the day to Davide Gozzini, the former leader of the Championship; Davide (9/8/6) was less happy than in Spa, with a couple of crash in the races. Massimo Verderosa (6/4/2) got the second spot in the SuperFinal and the second position overall with 34 points and consolidated his second position in the standings. Fabio Balducci (3/5/6) was the third man on the podium, followed (at the overall classification of the GP) by Simone Girolami (6/12/5) and Fabrice Lecoanet (2/14/7). The factory KTM rider crashed twice in the second final (he was third and tried to pass Adrien Chareyre for second) and crashed again in the SuperFinal. Many riders crashed in the dirt part of the track, loosing precious seconds there; Pignotti (first final), Lecoanet and Girolami (second final), Chareyre and Balducci (fighting for the second position in the SuperFinal), Pignotti, Gozzini… Fred Bolley had a bad first final (stop and go as he started too promptly), came back from tenth to fourth in the second race and was on the way to a brilliant second place in the SuperFinal when the engine broke in the 21st lap and through the Frenchmen over the bar! On the Terramodena, the other new Italian bike, Alexandre Thiebault finishes the three races and offered to the team his best result so far with a thirteenth place in the SuperFinal.

After a disappointing Grand Prix of Belgium, Thierry Van Den Bosch took his revenge and had no rivals on Sunday, after loosing the pole position on Saturday. He only let his teammate Boris Chambon leading the first lap of the first final and later the first one of the SuperFinal, but then the suspense was over as the former World Champion was on another planet this weekend. He’s back in fourth in the Championship, only two points behind Eddy Seel (7/5/4) who had a difficult weekend in Arad; the 2003 World Champion crashed in the first final and saved precious points but was realistic when he left the Romanian track “We have to work really hard in the next month with the team to develop our new bike, as we saw today that the opposition is stronger than us”. Boris Chambon (3/3/2) is the new leader of the Championship, as Ivan Lazzarini (4/2/9) lost a lot of points after missing the start of the SuperFinal when his engine stopped on the grid! The surprise this weekend came from Valter Bartolini (5/4/3) who offered a podium to the team VOR; the Italian even passed Chambon for second in the SuperFinal, but finally the French rider passed him back later. It was a great event for the VOR factory, as Graziano Rispoli got his beats result with a fifth place in the SuperFinal. Gerald Delepine (2/10/5), Massimo Beltrami (16/19/7) and Fabrice Guyot (19/21/22) all had a couple of crashes, while Max Manzo (14/9/15) scored his first points for Aprilia in this class.

The next round will be the Grand Prix of Czech Republic in Sosnova (August 21st-22nd)

Info and results on the official website of the championship:

Photo (C) J. Barte – Info MediaPresse


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