The opening round of the 2020 FIM SuperEnduro World Championship in Poland was a memorable one for Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing with Billy Bolt charging to victory, while team-mate Alfredo Gomez joined him on the podium for third overall.
Making a triumphant return to SuperEnduro racing having missed the entire 2019 season due to injury, Bolt made his presence felt inside the Tauron Arena.
Mastering the unpredictable and technically demanding course, he delivered the strongest performance of the night. Securing two race wins from three starts, he also took a commanding victory in the SuperPole qualification lap.
Arriving in Poland eager for his championship campaign to begin, Bolt looked to show that his strong performances during his debut season in 2018 were no fluke.
Positioning himself at the sharp end of the field early in race one, he went back and forth multiple times with home favourite Taddy Blazusiak for the win. Eventually breaking clear with four laps to go, he claimed the opening victory of the night.
Blocked in traffic due to the start positions being reversed for race two, he managed to work his way up to second by lap six of 11. Drawing level with race leader Blazusiak he attempted an overtake but got hung up on the slippery rocks and had to settle for an eventual second.
Knowing the outcome of the night hung on the balance of race three, he wasted little time in hitting the front by taking control of the race lead from Blazusiak on lap two. In what would become the fastest race of the night, Bolt put in a masterclass of riding to lap up to third position on his way to a 21-second margin of victory.
For team-mate Gomez, his 2020 SuperEnduro season got off to a flying start. Targeting a top-three result entering Poland, the Spaniard achieved exactly that by securing the third step of the podium.
Billy Bolt: “I’m over the moon to come away from round one with such a good performance and the championship lead. With two race wins and the SuperPole, it’s been a fantastic night. I knew coming here I wouldn’t be the favourite in Taddy’s home stadium but I just focused on what I could do.
“The track itself was so tricky, the dirt was unpredictable and a lot of the obstacles slippery, especially the rocks. Fastest in SuperPole was a great confidence boost. It was a big battle with Taddy in race one – we changed the lead a lot but it worked out in my favour. For the final race things just clicked right. I found the groove I wanted and the laps times came to me.
“12 months ago I was sitting in a hospital bed watching this race happen without me, now I’ve won it and go to Germany with the points lead – I can’t ask for better than that!”
Alfredo Gomez: “Coming here my goal was to finish on the podium, so I’m happy with that but would have liked to have been closer to the leaders. I feel like it wasn’t quite the best of races for me. It was a difficult track to get right. In training, I crashed and that knocked my confidence somewhat.
But racing is always different and I did my best to fight forward. Races one and two were good, but coming off the start line in race three I got a kick from another rider and lost a lot of places as a result. To recover to third after that was a good job. Leaving here third in points is a great start to the championship and I think as we work to develop the bike we can improve some more.”
The FIM SuperEnduro World Championship continues with the second stop of the five-round series in Germany on January 4, 2020.