The 2018 FIM X-Trial World Championship gets underway a few weeks ahead of the New Year in France this weekend. Toni Bou is set to start the defence of his eleventh indoor title.
Vendespace in La Roche sur Yon, France will be the scene of the first round of the 2018 FIM X-Trial World Championship, with Repsol Honda Team and Toni Bou on a mission to retain the number one plaque emblazoned on the Montesa Cota 4RT.
Bou will seek to hold on to his indoor world crown in a season which will feature eight events – more than in last year’s. The format has also undergone some changes, this time with three phases to determine the competition’s eventual winner.
The first phase – an initial qualifying round – will be fought out in among the nine participating riders in groups of three. The top six go on to the next round – a semi-final – where only the best of each of the two groups will go through to dispute the grand final.
The inspection of the six sections is due to take place at 09:00 on the Sunday of the race on December 3rd. The event will start at 16:00 with the presentation of the riders. The final podium is expected to be held at 19:30.
2018 X-TRIAL CALENDAR
|3 December 2017||Vendéspace||Vendée||France|
|13 January 2018||Sud de France Arena||Montpellier||France|
|19 January 2018||Zénith de Toulouse||Toulouse||France|
|4 February 2018||Palau Sant Jordi||Barcelona||Spain|
|8 March 2018||CD San Pablo||Seville||Spain|
|17 March 2018||Accord Hotels Arena||Paris||France|
|29 March 2018||Budapest Sport Arena||Budapest||Hungary|
We are starting the 2018 championship just a couple of weeks after finishing our 2017 season which went so well. We have not had much time to prepare for the X-Trial which is why we have to be really careful and not slip up in the first event. There are many changes because the regulations and format have been changed for this season, but as always, we will have to give it our best shot. You can’t make mistakes because it can mean losing a lot of points for the championship. There will be twice as many races as last year, but the format doesn’t allow for errors either. The indoor I like a lot, but we will have to see if all the changes introduced will be positive for the championship.