|Baja Portalegre: António Maio "King of Baja Portalegre" in the bikes category.|
Regarding the bike category in this 25th Baja Vodafone Baja Portalegre 500, it is appropriate to say that it was only one man show! António Maio imposed a pace that it was impossible to follow by the other competitors. The most important opponents retired, with a prominent note to Helder Rodrigues and Paulo Gonçalves, both by mechanical failure.
After winning the prologue, Maio had the advantage of being able to choose the starting position and opted to start in the third group of riders, to be able to manage better the race and not have to open the track.
The strategy resulted in part because the Yamaha rider quickly moved ahead and was even the first on the road for most of the race: "If I knew that it would be so maybe I had opted to start even from more behind. Before the first service I was already first on the road, and then it was only a question of controlling. This is a very long race where you must control the mechanic and your own body. The track was not very hard, it had enough traction, which was very good, and I managed to do a race without scares. Win in Portalegre has the same flavor of a Championship", explained António Maio.
The winner finished with more than 17 minutes of advantage from Luis Oliveira, spectacular in his debut in the cross country, with the Yamaha YZ rider crowning his entry in the discipline with a second place. "I felt fine physically and, despite a tough event, I haven't had any problem. It was a good experience that I would like to repeat. Portalegre is a special race, where I wanted to participate for quite some time and now I have had the opportunity to realize this wish".
More troubled was Faust Mota's race, who reached the end without front brake: "After the last service, a piece of wood has damaged the front brake and I rode like that until the end. Being third in Portalegre is a fantastic result and has a special flavor".
David Megre fought for the podium until the end, but eventually finished fourth, ahead of Nuno Silva that closed the top five.
2011/10/30 | 16:54 CET | ARTICLE: MR/SY/BAJA500