Baja Aragón, the second round of the FIM Cross-Country Bajas World Cup, ended with Michael Metge (Sherco) winning a very close race by a narrow margin from Joan Pedrosa (KTM) and Adrien Metge (Sherco).
From the opening super special stage, Michael Metge and Joan Pedrero were closely matched and shared stage wins to finish with a margin of just 21 seconds.
After leading the quad class on Saturday night, Mario Cajon (KTM) was forced to retire and that paved the way for Dani Vilà (Yamaha) to claim the win.
After a meeting of the FIM jury, chaired by Jean-Luc Maindron, the times for the leading four riders from the third stage on Saturday were rectified. An arrow indicating the direction of arrival had fallen to the ground and rally organisers had placed a vehicle across the track in order to avoid the remainder of the field from getting lost after the four riders had passed.
On his debut with Team Sherco TVS, Michael Metge won in style. “Just like Joan Pedrero (KTM), I had a light Baja bike, but that forced us to refuel often,” said the young Frenchman. “Team Sherco has been professional and I owe the fact that I have been able to win to the speed and ability of the mechanics. For me, this is a new and beautiful adventure to share races in the same team as my brother and to be on the podium with him for this first Baja!”
A smiling David Casteu, sporting director of Sherco TVS Rally, said: “Michael’s coming to the team brought a lot of motivation to Adrien but also to the whole team. He had a professional race. We needed this victory, it feels good. As for Adrien, he rode all weekend with his rally bike and this is an extraordinary performance!”
Not only did Adrien Metge reach the third step of the podium racing with a much heavier motorbike but he also used a desert tyre and, unfortunately, during the night, it rained…
Sola finished fourth followed by Oliveras, Patrao and Brabec. Adam Tomiczek (KTM Orlen) was eighth and his team-mate Maciej Giemza was 10th.
In the quad category, last year’s winner Arnaldo Martins (Suzuki) had to leave victory to the Junior rider Dani Vilà (Yamaha) and settle for the second step on the podium after being penalised 16 minutes for arriving late at PC6.
Junior rider Miguel Antonio Esteban (KTM) finished in third place, despite being penalised 13 minutes for speeding.
Rosa Romero (KTM) won the Women’s category ahead of Sara Garcia (Yamaha) and Rita Vieira (Yamaha).
Follow us for the next adventure in Chile’s Atacama Desert for the third round of the FIM Cross-Country Rally Championship from August 11 to 18!
Text & Images: FIM