Takahisa Fujinami @FUJIGAS
Takahisa Fujinami is one of the most popular riders in World trials, and for good reason. His flamboyant riding style, aggression and bravery make him a crowd favourite wherever he goes, as he continually lives up to his billing as an unpredictable yet exciting rider to watch.
2004’s world title triumph was the deserved climax to a season, and a just reward for the tenacity and class shown by Takahisa Fujinami. The achievement came after a period dominating the Japanese national championships prior to making the leap to international level in the world championship.
The Repsol rider has now been through all the disciplines, and has balanced his way over everything type of two-wheeled bike. Before starting motorcycle trial and finishing runner-up in Japanese Class B at thirteen, Fujinami had been Mountain Bike Trial Champion. From a very tender age, the Japanese rider had proved to be a prodigious talent in any speciality, which allowed him to scale great heights very quickly, leading to a brilliant first title clinched in Japan in 1995.
His first noteworthy achievement in the world championship was to come shortly after with a seventh-place final finish in 1996. One year on, Takahisa worked his way up to fourth overall. A runner-up place in 2000 consolidated his position as one of the category’s top riders. By now, the Japanese rider with the permanent smile had become fully integrated into both Spanish and European life, and was able to hone his skills and take two more runner-up positions in the shadow of legendary Doug Lampkin. It was perhaps, these numerous competitions, and later becoming the English ace’s sidekick that permitted him to refine his talents, and grow in stature until finally achieving the well-earned world title in 2004.
The 2005 championship went to Adam Raga with Fujinami in second final position ahead of team-mate and seven times champion Doug Lampkin. This was the season of the first outing for the new four-stroke Montesa Cota 4RT on which Fujigas finished runner-up once more in 2006, in spite of having picked up four victories – more than any of his rivals. 2007 saw him finish fourth in World Indoor Trial Championship, and third in the Outdoor. The Japanese rider scored exactly the same results in the following two seasons, 2008 and 2009, with a total of 27 podiums —5 Indoor and 22 Outdoor— and a victory in the U.S. in 2008.
2010 once more signalled an ascent to a higher performance plateau, this time with five podium places, including two victories in Portugal and the first race in Great Britain; one runner-up place in France, and two third spot finishes, one in the second GB race, plus one in Italy. The final tally added up to a fourth consecutive third place overall finish in the World Trial Outdoor Championship, a clear demonstration of the high level he was now attaining in the discipline. The same heights were almost being reflected too in the World Indoor Trial Championship, where a certain amount of added pressure and tricky new rules limited the rider to sixth overall place.
The following year —2011— took the Repsol Montesa Honda rider to fifth final position in the World X-Trial (Indoor) Championship, after a fall in the second race affected his performance over most of the rest of the season. The Repsol rider clinched six outdoor podiums: two second places in Andorra and Japan, and four third spots —Germany, Italy, Great Britain and Japan— which allowed him to take third place in the world championship for the fifth successive year, close behind team-mate Toni Bou, and Adam Raga.
There were a lot of ups and downs in store for Fujinami in 2012, who finished fifth in the World Trial Outdoor Championship with 174 points on the scoreboard and five podiums: two seconds —Italy and Great Britain— and three third places —Australia, Japan and Andorra— out of the thirteen races disputed. In the FIM X-Trial World Championship, the Japanese rider finished fourth, finishing on the podium three times –Switzerland, Spain and France– with a total of 69 points in seven races.
This year finished with a fifth place on the final leader-board in the X-Trial competition, where Fujigas – alongside team-mate Toni Bou, debuted the new four-stoke Montesa Cota 4RT in the championship’s final date. Over a total of five races Fujinami grabbed two podiums; two third place finishes in both the Spanish races. Along with his three sixth places, he had chalked up a total of 39 points.
The new non-stop rules introduced into the outdoor competition have caused some controversy, but Takahisa Fujinami has adapted well to it, most of all with the victory picked up on home soil in Japan. The Repsol rider made it up onto the podium four times: with the Japanese win; a runner-up place in Great Britain, and bottom step in both the U.S. and Italy. After a total of thirteen race disputed in the Outdoor championship, the rider has accumulated a total of 169 points which brought him a fifth overall position in the FIM World Trial Championships.
2014 got underway with a great victory in the opening race of the world championship, in Australia, although a knee injury and its subsequent operation at the close of the championship, saw the rider’s efforts seriously hampered throughout the season. In spite of the injury, he battled on to a well-deserved fifth overall position in the outdoor championship. The Japanese rider has graced the ‘top five’ for over eighteen years now.
|First Trial||1990 - Chiba|
|World Trial Debut||1996 Spanish GP, Navacerrada|
|First World Trial Win||1997 German GP, Thalheim|
|Total World Trial Wins||33|
|World Titles||1 - 2004|
|2000||2nd World Trials Championship, 5th World Indoor Championship|
|2001||2nd World Trials Championship, 6th World Indoor Championship|
|2002||2nd World Trials Championship, 6th World Indoor Championship|
|2003||2nd World Trials Championship, 5th World Indoor Championship|
|2004||World Trials Champion, 2nd World Indoor Championship|
|2005||2nd World Trials Championship, 5th World Indoor Championship|
|2006||2nd World Trials Championship, 5th World Indoor Championship|
|2007||3rd World Trials Championship, 4th World Indoor Championship|
|2008||3rd World Trials Championship, 4th World Indoor Championship|
|2009||3rd World Trials Championship, 4th World Indoor Championship|
|2010||3rd World Trials Championship, 6th World X-Trial Championship|
|2011||3rd World Trials Championship, 5th World X-Trial Championship|
|2012||5th World Trials Championship, 4th World X-Trial Championship|
|2013||5th World Trials Championship, 5th World X-Trial Championship|
|2014||5th World Trials Championship, 6th World X-Trial Championship|
|2015||5th World Trials Championship|
|2016||up than 300 GP races in Trial World Championship|
|2016||3rd World Trials Championship, 5th World X-Trial Championship|
|Date of Birth||13th January 1980|
|Place of Birth||Mie Prefecture, Japan|
|Residence||Torroella de Montgrí, Girona, Spain|
|Hobbies||Music and Tennis|
More Stats & Facts
|Unique rider with 20 years in the World Championship|
|Unique rider to class in the World Championship 'top5' during 18 years in a row|
|Youngest rider ever to win a world championship event (17 years, 7 months, 25 days)|
|First rider with 300 GP races in Trial World Championship|