It was left until the final day of the entire MAXXIS FIM ENDURO WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP season for 26 year old Antoine MEO (FRA-HVA) to take his first World Championship title. This Sunday, at the end of a high-tension AMV GRAND PRIX in France, the Husqvarna rider joined top names in the category, where he resisted attacks from the KTM armada, namely Eero REMES (SF-KTM) and Johnny AUBERT (FRA-KTM). Before an audience that has continued to encourage him throughout the weekend, the darling of the French Enduro won the prestigious crown, which he has chased since his arrival in Enduro 3 years ago. After a tumultuous season, the new world champion put an end to the seven-year famine of team Husqvarna. As he arrived, the tears of his manager Fabrizio Azzalin said a lot about the emotion and feelings of deliverance within the reigning Italian manufacturer.
Antoine MEO: "I’m relieved, it seemed to be an endless day. We even had more rain by midday. I was lucky not to get stuck in the boulders, I managed to have a good race. The last lap was really long. We have come a long way with Husqvarna, we have won amongst the best machines in the world. It really is crazy."
In the shadow of the coronation of Meo and a concert of vuvuzela under the Husqvarna canopy, Julien GAUTHIER (FRA-HM) gave his best performance in a Grand Prix. However, breaking his selector, he left a two-second victory to Meo but was rewarded with a good second place.
In Enduro 2, Mika AHOLA (SF-HM) titled the previous day, chose to skip the last round and followed his HM Honda team mates. Ivan CERVANTES (ESP-KTM) didn’t seem to be the most motivated rider in this, the last cold and rainy race. After making the start, he abandoned during the first lap of the course, assured of collecting a second place finish in the championship. However, in the absence of the two E2 heavyweights, the category certainly did not lack interest. Pierre–Alexandre RENET (FRA-KTM) maintained the lead and took his first Grand Prix victory – confirming his status as the best rookie of 2010. He beat rival Thomas OLDRATI (ITA-KTM) by 1 minute and 36 seconds, who finished third place in the championship final.
Hamstrung during the first innings, David KINIGHT (UK-KTM) resumed. On a weathered track ploughed by the bikes, the world champion dominated the early afternoon but received a one minute penalty and slipped into third place. It was the competition for second place that really became the subject of the day. After taking a two-point counting advantage over his rival Simone ALBERGONI (ITA-KTM) on the first day, Sebastien GUILLAUME (FRA-HVA) was further back during the first part of the race. But the French do not lose anything and GUILLAUME returned to equal the Italian’s effort before the final stage of the race. The advantage on the last lap was taken by the Husqvarna rider and after a season enamelled with injuries he finished in an unexpected second place.
With the titles already won, the results of the Juniors and Women’s were anecdotal. Jeremy JOLY (FRA-HM) was the fastest rider in all categories. A double French win shone throughout the Sunday race just as Ludivine PUY made history as the first Enduro world champion.