With the FIM Motocross World Championship 2010 season coming to an end in Fermo this weekend, home rider David Philippaerts started off strong by taking the pole ahead of tomorrow's races, when he will chase the second position in the Championship after Tony Cairoli won it in Brazil.
A hard fought MX1 qualifying heat saw Philippaerts dominate but second place went to a surprising Sebastien Pourcel finishing ahead of Nicolas Aubin, both taking their first top three finish of 2010.
Fourth was Tony Cairoli -in the day he and Philippaerts have been finally confirmed as Team Italy riders at the Red Bull FIM Motocross of Nations- as he struggled after the start and lost a few positions.
It was Cairoli leading the pack into the first corner but once he opened the gas to get away from his rivals, he found himself in a wrong line and Philippaerts could snatch the lead. The Yamaha Monster Energy Motocross rider raced hard to keep the lead as French Aubin and Pourcel followed him right from the start to the race.
Rockstar Energy Bud Racing Kawasaki's Aubin became dangerous at lap four when he managed to move past Philippaerts and take the lead. Though the Italian fought back to place himself on top again and from then on he dominated the race to take his fourth pole of 2010.
Aubin was settling for a solid second when Kawasaki Racing's French countryman Pourcel moved past. The latter wrapped up the runner up position ahead of Aubin as both celebrated their best qualifying result of 2010.
Red Bull KTM Factory Racing MX1's Cairoli found himself at the bottom of the top five after his mistake at the first corner and was forced to recover up to an eventual fourth place, moving past Belgian Ramon.
2010 MX1 World Champion Cairoli tried to catch Aubin for third but preferred to save his energies for tomorrow, when he and Philippaerts wish to hand their home crowd a Grand Prix win.
Rockstar Teka Suzuki World MX1's Ramon did a consistent race and rode fifth from beginning to end but the Belgian did several mistakes which made him crash and put in danger his position. However, his gap with his pursuer Guarneri of Italy was big enough to keep his position until the chequered flag.
Guarneri was a solid sixth as he still seeks his maiden podium in the MX1 class while Nagl was seventh.
Runner up in the Championship Desalle instead struggles after his crashes at Lierop and ended a brave eighth. Life will not be easy tomorrow for the Belgian, with both Philippaerts and Nagl aiming at his position in the standings.
Albertson and Boog completed the top ten ahead of Coppins, racing his last Grand Prix this weekend.
2010 MX3 World Champion Campano enjoyed his wild card ride for the Italian MX1 Grand Prix as he qualified in 14th position.
Finishing 16th, Italian Monni was satisfied of his first day of GP racing after his neck injury from Agueda which he picked up four months ago.
Brazilian Balbi was a bitter 25th with Barragan experiencing similar misfortune as a crash dropped him down from seventh to 20th with just two laps to go.
MX1 Qualifying Race top ten: 1. David Philippaerts (ITA, Yamaha), 24:33.353; ; 2. Sebastien Pourcel (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:03.788; 3. Nicolas Aubin (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:05.316; 4. Antonio Cairoli (ITA, KTM), +0:07.550; 5. Steve Ramon (BEL, Suzuki), +0:13.835; 6. Davide Guarneri (ITA, Honda), +0:16.212; 7. Maximilian Nagl (GER, KTM), +0:16.956; 8. Clement Desalle (BEL, Suzuki), +0:26.565; 9. Jimmy Albertson (USA, Honda), +0:27.269; 10. Xavier Boog (FRA, Kawasaki), +0:28.231