|Baja Portalegre: Last year´s winner António Maio wins prologue in bike-class.|
With a high level entry list, where important names as Hélder Rodrigues, Paulo Gonçalves, Ruben Faria, António Maio and Jakub Przygonski, the prologue gave the motto of what can be expected along the 400 kilometers of the race, but still the thankless task of opening the road may have an important role.
António Maio was the fastest on the Prologue, with the Yamaha rider assuming that he will choose to start late on the field, to be able to manage better the race.
"It went well, as I won, but I'm making the first race with this bike and I am not happy with the set-up. It will be changed for the second day. Having been fastest, that allows me to choose the starting position and I will drop further back, because it is easier to manage the race and because the motivation to achieve who goes in front is greater. Sometimes, when we stand alone leading a race, the rhythm breaks. The track is very good, with excellent traction, but Portalegre is Portalegre, it is a long race and a lot can happen", says the two wheels leader.
Luís Oliveira was a surprising second in his debut in Portalegre: "It was difficult to do better. It is my debut in the race and is a new challenge, but are these moments that make us grow", he explained.
Paulo Gonçalves was third fastest and he would like to repeat the victory of 2001. "The prologue went well. Let's have a match like the old days, with four riders starting side-by-side so I'll start on the front, because this year only the first can choose the starting position. It will be a good race, the track is with a lot of traction, dust free, and I would like to win this race of celebration of 25 years of Baja Portalegre", said one of the main national riders.
After winning the Cross Country World Cup and the rally of Morocco, Helder Rodrigues reaches Portalegre without much thought in victory. "This time I cannot take risks. In addition I am tired and with flu, so my concern will be rolling and not be worried about winning", said the rider who nonetheless clocked the fifth time in the prologue.
Ruben Faria is recovering from an injury and his concern is "conquering the title of class TT3. I only need to be 10th to win the title, so I made a bad time to be able to reach service and know how many riders of the class are ahead of me to be able to control the race", said the rider from Algarve.
2011/10/28 | 20:02 CET | ARTICLE: MR/SY/B500